Sunday, 30 April 2017

Colemere - Black Terns!!

The prospects for today were awesome, low cloud and a fresh south easterly wind (after a week or more of northerlies) ... it looked as if a cracking Ternsday was looming?? Question was, where to go? Not for the first time I put my faith misguidedly in an early start at Venus Pool,  but by 9.30, NOTHING! So I decided to head North and check the Meres. Colemere was my first destination and literally 10 mins away...news came out from Rob Dowley... TWO Black Terns!

I joined him and spent the next few hours trying to do justice to these two beauties (not easy!) 

Over white water they looked awful so I concentrated on getting them against the distant green background and it was manual focus all the way!

Here we go, with head on opportunities within 50m!



This individual looks like it's primaries have seen better days! Looks like it's in moult which (according to an old paper I've just read) does happen in 2cy birds which (rarely) replace all their primaries in May?




And seemingly getting most of my attention!






Here's the other, neater bird - just as obliging!





And perhaps my favourite moment - once in a while, banking and briefly hovering...




First Hobby of the year over the trees and a Common Tern had also passed through 9.30ish and another (or the same bird) was present until mid afternoon too! A few record shots to follow...

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Venus Pool - Yellow wagtail

Yellow Wagtails are now starting to make their presence known and there were three at Venus Pool this evening, 2 smart males and a female. Here's one of the males coming close...






Certainly aren't get the numbers seen in recent years and would be nice to see Shropshire produce a Channel Wag once more!!

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Wood Lane - White Wagtail

My first Yellow Wagtail of the year picked up here today ( nice male but on the far bank) plus this White Wagtail. Strictly record shots...







Just the one LRP seen too but lots of places to hide!

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Dingle - Night Heron goes walkabout!

A sleepy start to the day and business as usual with the Night Heron showing well but one thing which was blatantly obvious was a mark or strip of material on the right foot!




Contrary to news which seemed to be abounding on twitter later in the day, it's not a ring mark. It's a strip of leaf, petal or some form of vegetation which had become firmly attached to the leg (much akinto the screen protector on your phone!)


And it most definitely wasn't there on Sunday!!



So, with that misinformation put to bed... Sleepyhead seems to have woken now and totally out of the blue, flew to the far end of the pool...



There it was, perched up on the brickwork!




And preparing to go walkabout!


Best foot forward, you can see how the strip of vegetation doesn't extend behind the leg...





And if you haven't seen it, note the missing claw...



Wondering where to go next? Note the leaves.. similar colour to the attached material!




Taking life one step at a time...



And clearly not too keen on the local Mallards!!


Sending them scattering :-)


The final party piece?


A bit uncertain about this 'deep water'?


In fact, clearly pertrified of it!!


I returned in the evening, curious to see if the material had become detached? Looking like more ring marks are now attached in various colours?! You can see the original strip is still attached at this point!


After a bit of a wobbly...


Flying once again to the other end of the pool!






But just look what's disappeared after this particular flight!


Any doubters still out there? Mystery solved, elementary my dear Night Heron!



And with the gates about to be locked, a final tantalising pose!



Yes, we can see you...

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Dingle - Night Heron finale

Setting the scene, this is the only Heron normally seen in this idyllic Shrewsbury garden known as The Dingle!



No superlatives in part one? Bloody hell, absolutely amazing, the Night Heron has not only flown towards us... but landed in a bank side bush in full view! It doesn't look close, does it but it's less than 10m from the bank!



The only questions being asked were, how quickly can I get the converter off and why hadn't I got a shorter focal length lens with me (again)




OK, Converter is now removed but it's still frame filling!!




And walking closer... OMG!


Now there's no alternative, a close up fest beckons...




I'm staying calm!




I was almost relieved when it flew back over to the other side of the pool? Noooo, it''s still too close! (Only kidding) :-)



And if you've never seen a Night Heron's tongue?


I walked around to the far bank - the shot I'd been hankering for - Shrewsbury Night Heron - in habitat!!



Just another ordinary day turned rather extraordinary!!! You couldn't have scripted this?