Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Venus Pool - Channel at last!

I've been putting in some hours at VP, the recent Osprey was one good reason and the other.... Well, the other reason was to try and get a decent shot of the Channel Wagtail! The day started off promising when it truned up briefly on the mud in front of the memorial hide mid morning....



I suppose that was as close as I could expect to see the bird from the hide - the only other chance was going to be in the top field? The Wagtail flock: Yellow (6), White (7), Pied (3) had not been associating with the sheep, that is until today! The dandelions near the sheep were noted to be moving during an evening visit and I hadn't been drinking :-)

I staked out a gap in the top field, did my best impression of Helen calling the sheep - "Come on boys" and they did!! With the male Channel Wagtail in tow :-)

What is a Channel Wagtail? It's the offspring between the continental race
of Yellow Wagtail - 'Blue headed Wagtail' (Motacilla flava flava) and our own race (Motacilla flava flavissima). The male hybrid offspring is quite distinct from either race and the defining features are clearly shown in this posting. The most obvious feature is the pale blue 'powder or lavender blue' head. The throat is pure white too rather than yellow and if you want to see the difference betwen hybrid and Blue headed Wag - check out the 2010 posting here

Back to the present.....



Constantly on the move, it was a nightmare to keep track of and there weren't many 'motion blur' free shots.....







Eventually the flighty little so and so sat still and (apart from wishing the light could be better) I was actually quite happy :-)





It was very easy to ignore the male Yellow Wagtails with the Channel taking precedence but one came close.



And another VERY close....



The male Redstart was still showing very well on occasions (given a lot of patience!)



All things (well most things) come to those who wait.....

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