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, 19 January 2010

One year today

Yup, 194 posts later, and the blog’s a year old today. Thank you to everyone who stops by, everyone who follows, and everyone who comments. I’ve had a great time through the year, learnt a lot from the blogs I follow, made great cyber friends from all over, and even met some in the real world.

First picture I posted was this cold chap;

Coal Tit, from a snowy January in 2009

So, onto the present, sort of. A few days ago I went to one of the local lakes in the hope that the wandering Smew might have dropped in. They hadn’t. They seem to be one jump, or flight ahead of me. Not to worry, the flying Dunlops were about.

Cormorant, thinking about going fishing. Didn’t take them long to decide.

Off, off, and away. One of them, anyway.

Sunday promised some sun, and the day before there were reports of a male Smew at Stewartby Lake, just up the road. The sun arrived on cue, but the Smew had left. Oh well. As I pulled into the car park, I noticed a small flock of birds fly into the trees up ahead. Their undulating flight made me think of Goldfinches, as I raised the bins for a better look.

Nope. Redpolls; or Lesser Redpolls, as they’re called now. I took a few shots, and they happily carried on feeding. Could I get closer? Worth a try.

I slowly made my way towards the tree, stopping occasionally to take a few pictures.

Eventually I managed to get right under the tree. The birds just ignored me, and carried on feeding.

I got my fill of pictures, and left them to carry on getting their fill of food.


  1. Great photos and congrats on 1 year :)

  2. Hi Keith,
    I only started to visit your blog few months ago, but it has been a real pleasure for my eyes and for my brain too ;-) I love what you are doing and how you dedicate your camera to show us the feather world around you. You highly deserve to get all these comments and visits! Happy blogversary my friend!

  3. Congratulations on reaching your first birthday / anniversary. I always look forward to your great photos and have no doubt you will delight us with many more over the coming year.

    Great photos of the Lesser Redpoll and the Cormorant in flight.

  4. Beautiful photos as usual Keith :-). Never seen a redpoll - you must be really pleased that they let you come so close.

  5. Neil, thank you for stopping by, and leaving a comment. Appreciated.

    Thanks Chris. Glad you enjoy your visits. I think one of the great things about blogs is seeing such a varied selection of wildlife from around the world, through the lens of the blog authors. The greatest source of information and entertainment. Thanks again.

    John, thank you. Maybe this year I’ll get that elusive Kingfisher lol

    Thanks Helen. First time I’d seen one for years, and I was over the moon to be able to get so close. Really made my day.

    Bhavesh, thank you very much for your compliment.

  6. That Coal Tit was a fantastic start to your new venture and the Cormorants and Lesser Redpolls show it continues on its sweet way one year on.

  7. Its been a pleasure reading your blog through the year Keith. The Coal Tit image was a brilliant start and you have exceeded that with these fantastic L/Redpoll shots. Keep it up mate.

  8. Beautiful photos. I find birds in flight so difficult to photograph. Happy first year. Wishing you many more.

  9. Happy Birthday to your blog! Distinct photographs from an excellent photographer!

    Thanks to your work I look differently to the little birds!

  10. Great action shot of the low flying Cormorant, like the Redpolls also. The blog is great and worthy of any plaudits you get Keith, well done for keeping it going. A great narrative and great pictures always look forward to your posts. Hope your second year is also a great one.

  11. Fantastic photos especially the last three, they are super! Oh and happy one year anniversary!

  12. Very many congratulations Keith, I'm sure you already know how much I love your blog! Every visit is a pleasure, lovely words and beautiful photos :)

    How lovely to be able to celebrate by showing us the Redpolls, another bird I have never seen other than in books. I see they are generally only seen up north but do visit the south in the Winter...I would love to see them. Gorgeous, gorgeous photos, I do hope you continue to thrill us for a very long time to come Keith, it has been a real pleasure getting to know you :)

    PS. I thought the word verification of 'scombul' sounded rather insulting on such an auspicious occasion !!!

  13. Those Redpolls are amazing, well shot Keith.

  14. congradulations and another set of excellent photos.

  15. Hello Keith I beleive we should be the ones thanking you for the great photos you have shared with us all over the past 12 months, I look forward to many more years of your great photography.
    All the best Keith H.

  16. Congratulations Keith. That's sounds almost unbelievable, 194 posts in 1 year! Awesome. I wish you all the best to continue this great job in the future!

  17. Thanks Trevor. I’ve really enjoyed the first year, and been lucky to see some great birds.

    Roy, thank you. Hopefully it’ll keep improving lol

    Hilary, thanks for your comment. I get loads of flight shots that finish up in the bin.

    Marius, thanks for your kind comments; appreciate it.

    Bobb, thank you. Must admit I was pleased with the Cormorant shot.

    Sara, thanks for your comments. The year seems to have flown by.

    ShySongbird, thank you for your kind words. I wasn’t sure if I could keep it up to begin with.
    Those word verifications are quite strange sometimes lol

    Bob, thank you. The Redpolls were very patient lol

    Thank you Ginger. I’ve really enjoyed this first year.

    Thanks Keith. The birds are the real stars. I just love being out there with them.

    Andor, thank you. I’m looking forward to see what the next 12 months bring :)

  18. Congrats on the first year Keith. Hell of an effort to make 194 posts!
    love the shots of the Cormorants and the close ups of the Redpolls

  19. Happy Blogging Anniversary!!!! Isn't it amazing how quickly the year has past? (Do you have any more stories up your sleeve? I really enjoyed that little story you posted earlier in the year.) .....beautiful captures of the redpoll munching away on the seeds.

  20. Firstly, albeit a day late, a very happy blog birthday. You've kept me entertained for the past year and your pictures have been some of the best!! I'm really looking forward to what the next 12 months will bring and, you never know, perhaps we'll share a birding trip in that time ;) And those Redpolls are real scene stealers!

  21. Thanks for your comment Dev. I was quite surprised when I saw how many posts there were over the year.

    Thanks Kelly. The time has seemed to go very quickly.
    I’ve been working on another solaf story for some time, but I really have to be in the right mood for it. I know the plot and everything, it’s just getting it down how I want it. I’d be a hopeless author with a deadline lol

    Tricia, thank you. Glad you’ve enjoyed your visits. Appreciate that.
    Sharing a birding trip sometime sounds a great idea.

  22. Yeh, I know, late to the party!
    One year on and going from strength to strength. If I had a tiny bit of your photo skills I'd be over the moon. Anyway I'll continue with the "watching" brief.
    Happy blog anniversary my friend. FAB.

  23. Keith....I always love your posts! And thank you so much for all the comments on my blog about my baby hummingbirds. They are doing well.

  24. Cheers Frank, very kind of you. I think a lot of it is luck though lol

    Dave, thank you. :)

    Thank you Lenora.
    Hope they continue to do well.

  25. Well done!
    I enjoy visiting and taking in the beauty you've captured and shared. I'm looking forward to the great photos to come. A~

  26. Andrea, thank you for your comment. :)

  27. The photographs of the Redpoll are amazing, I've not seen one for quite a while now unfortunately, them seem to have declined a little bit on my local patch.

    Congratulations on being a blogger for a year!

  28. So many wonderful photos! Happy Anniversary to you! You're one of my favorite bird blogs to visit (especially when I can break away from my studies!)

  29. Hi Keith...love the action shot of the cormorant!! Very nice work getting those Redpolls too!! Congrats on the anniversary celebration!! SO now its a new year off and Flying!!

  30. Excellent Keith that you were able to get that close to those Redpolls. I have never seen them in Europe. You have a knack for finding some very cool stuff. I love the shot of the Coal Tit too !

  31. Hi Keith!! you have so many awesome and stunning shots, have you ever considered making a calendar? fantastic post as always!!

  32. Congratulations Keith. Everyone I know who visits you is always so impressed with your work.

  33. holdingmoments I love your first photo, and congratulations on your blogging, that is nice mile stone. Anna :) PS Always love your narration to the images, excellent images as always.

  34. Congrats on a year of blogging! I love the pictures of the bird in the branches eating. :)

    I loved your Solaf story, and I am so happy our blogs crossed.

    You're awesome!

    I am SO glad you are back, and ok (I read this post after I commented on your most recent scary post!)

    Hugs to you Keith - you are the best darn bird photographer I know!

  35. Anna, thank you. They were the first I’d seen for some time too.

    Shelley, thank you. Very kind of you.
    Hope your studies are going well.

    Dixxe, thank you. Yea, the new year started good; then a massive hiccup lol
    Oh well. Can only get better now?

    Cheers Nick. The Redpolls were more interested in food that morning; thankfully. :)

    Doreen, thank you. I did a calendar this year, and last year, but the cost was a bit too much to make it a worthwhile venture. If only I could find a cheaper printer.

    Scriptor, thank you very much for those kind words. Really appreciate that.

    Thank you Anna. I wondered sometimes if I’d ever make a year. :)

    Thanks Jen, you are very kind.
    I can’t wait to be able to get back out with the camera. Going to be a while though.