Everything has it's beauty, but not everyone sees it. - Confucius
Sometimes the picture doesn't have to be perfect; it's the captured moment that counts. - me
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Tuesday, 6 October 2009

A quick visit.

After the excitement of the ‘deer park’, the next day I paid a visit to one of the local lakes. I was reasonably early, and managed to catch a bit of sun as it made its way from behind the island.

I always enjoy a visit to Willen, even if it’s just for a few hours. I managed to catch up with the Black Swan too. Two in fact.
It was good to see them together, swimming round like old friends. One must have been the surrogate parent of the Mute Swans, from earlier in the year; or maybe not. I tried for a good look at the bill, and to me it didn’t look the same. Maybe my eyes, or maybe some more detective work is in order another time.
A slow walk to the fitness centre, and plenty of geese and ducks around. The two Call Ducks were still about, so they must have decided to stay, and then a slow walk back.
A Great Crested Grebe swam purposefully along, carrying a fish.
I’ve watched them do this before, usually taking it to one of the young. He swam, dived, and swam some more, still holding onto the fish. No sign of any young, or adult, and he slowly turned back the way he came. This was attracting the attention of a Black-headed Gull, who thought maybe an easy meal was to be had.
He swooped down, as the Grebe submerged again, reappearing some distance away. The gull wasn’t giving up. He swooped down again, and the Grebe dived for cover.When he appeared again, the fish was gone, but the gull continued his dive-bombing tactics, much to the annoyance of the Grebe.
The fish got away, whilst the two hunters continued arguing.

A few moments sat in the hide, watching the now regular Snipe, and then I made my way home. On the hill, up to the car park, rows of heads appeared, like submarine periscopes.
Canada Geese, about a dozen, grazing like sheep.

And as I made my way through the trees, a Robin sat, giving me a look that said I was trespassing,

Well, it is his wood.


  1. Hi Keith,
    Wow this is a beautiful set of shots! I cannot even say which one I prefer! Although I have only rarely seen a black swan (I think once in Helsinki)! The robin attitude is beautiful... Well done for a quick visit!

  2. That's a beautiful collection, the scene of the sun disappearing and the Great Crested Grebe is marvelous. Well done.

  3. You caught a lovely sky there Keith - ours has been drab all day.
    Yes, that Robin is giving you a very pointed look!

  4. Thanks Chris. The Black Swan is a beauty of a bird. The feathers remind me of curls of butter lol

    Thanks Bob. A rare sunrise for this week.

    Cheers Rob. Robins can have such a 'look' at times. lol

  5. Great shots there Keith. Love the Grebe.

  6. Nice pictures Keith we dont see many black swans down this way, The red sky behind the trees is great.

  7. Hi Keith, thats an awesome Robin! And the fight over the fish looks serious! Glad he got away this time!

  8. LOL - Your commentary is too funny. :)

    You make me want to get up early and go somewhere that has wildlife, do you know how much I hate hate mornings? I am the crankiest person alive when I first get up, even the dogs are afraid to wake me up. That's the only power I have over them though. LOL!

  9. It is a beautiful collection. I particularly like the shot of the grebe with the fish in it's beak. It looks like pen and ink rather than a photo. Of course that robin shot is pretty special too ...

  10. Thanks for your comment Angie. A shame he was so far away though.

    Keith, thanks. At least one of these Swans has been here a few years. I noticed the second a few months ago. I don’t know if they’ll start to breed sometime. They might be of the same sex.

    Dixxe, thanks. The fish fight went on for a while, and was interesting to watch.

    Cheers Adrian. :)

    Thank you Jen. I find it hard getting up early myself, but my dog is the opposite to yours. Wakes me at 4 a.m. every day. Work today, so I didn’t mind too much lol

    Thank you Wilma. Robins have a habit of making their own picture. Always pose for the camera lol

  11. I often think sunrises can be more spectacular than sunsets though the lighting for photography is sort lived. You captured it perfectly there Keith.

  12. Like Jen I too would love to be up and out early but this night owl detests early mornings!

    Lovely to see the Black Swans again, we haven't seen ours again on our small local fishing lake, mind you there is nothing on there at all and we have heard that the owner 'deals' with any birds he finds there, I wish we could prove that!!

    I love the grebe/gull story and of course the photos, the one with a fish in its mouth is stunning!

    Lovely Robin photo too, it clearly wasn't impressed with you though ;)

  13. I forgot to say I spotted a photo and mention of a certain someone in the latest copy of Bird Watching magazine (page 117) well done Keith, it certainly is a strange phenomena! I remember when you first posted it.

    PS. If you have the magazine did you see those poor Great Tits with the strange growths, this seems to be something new, I hope we don't see more of it!

  14. NPT, thanks for your comment. :)

    Thanks John. Have to agree with you. Much prefer a sunrise. But they do seem to be over with the magic moment very quickly. And of course getting up for it is hard too, sometimes. lol

    Thanks for your comment ShySongbird. That lake owner doesn’t sound too nice. Someone should ‘deal’ with him.
    The Grebe incident was very interesting to watch, and a good outcome for the fish.
    My small claim to fame, that picture in Bird Watching lol
    I did read that too about the growths. Looks terrible.

    Thank you for your comment Bhavesh.

  15. simply beautifully captured shots....lovely colours and the views!

  16. Flyingstars thank you for your comment. Appreciate it.

  17. So it is not only me getting the look Keith.
    Nice work.

  18. all your shots are so perfect, love the sunrise! have a great week!!

  19. The universal look Trevor.
    I've had plenty over the years lol
    Thanks for your comment.

    Thank you for your comment Doreen. :)

  20. ...love the photo you capture of the grebe with the fish! ...and that little Robin is precious. (I went to Deer Park High School--36 years ago, so every time I read "deer park" in your narrations I get the warm fuzzies!)

  21. Thanks for your comment Kelly.
    The little Robins are such great characters, and very bold at times.
    And 'the warm fuzzies'.....that did make me smile when I read that lol

  22. I just adore that goose shot!
    And that sky...wow!

  23. What a big catch for the grebe and what an agressive behavior from the gull. I didn't knew that they steal sometimes from other birds. Very nasty.
    That little robin has such a funny look ... I agree with you, they are such a great character.

  24. Andrea, thank you. The geese looked quite comical with just their heads peeping over the hill.

    Thanks Andor. The gulls are great oportunists at times, and don't give up very easily. It was fascinating to watch the events.

  25. Enjoyed reading about these interactions - describing wildlife just as it is.

  26. Thank you for your comment Carol, appreciate it.
    There's so much drama to see in nature isn't there, when we take the time to look. Thank you.