Sunday, 27 April 2008

Venus Pool - Dunlin / Tern up

The forecast was cloud and persistent rain, for the morning anyway and I decided to have an early start at Venus Pool. With Andy Latham covering the Eastern front (at Allscot) hopes were high of a passage bird or two?

There were five Dunlin on arrival (6.10) at the pool and shortly afterwards a group of seven flew in. Photography was nigh on impossible in the dull light but I had a go......

Perhaps the highlight was a Common Tern dropping in at 6.20 and staying for an hour or so! Don't quite know how I managed to capture a couple of half decent flight shots given the awful conditions!

The shingle island in front of the hide attracted quite a few birds during the session: Little Ringed Plovers, a rather bedraggled Wheatear and Yellow Wagtail (three were seen).

The rain cleared by mid morning and the Dunlin flock had increased to 14. Every now and then they would fly around the pool putting the Red Arrows to shame! Mind you, a couple of birds broke formation on the second circuit (lower pic)

The Oystercatchers eggs must surely hatch soon (sitting since the end of March). Routine nest changes have been seamless and the plucky duo take on anything entering VP airspace - pretty good parents these!

Sometimes I feel like putting the camera away in dull light and rain but it can lead to some moody atmospheric or dynamic motion shots. Once upon a time, I might have deleted these two shots - I actually quite like them but then it's all in the eye of the beholder.....

A great early morning session with some good banter being had by all. Paul, Dave W early on, then Jase after his lie in! The flash incident kept us all going and will remain in the annals of hidelore for ever more! I'm still not sure who won the 'war'. OK, maybe the Hobby and Ringed Plovers from the Eastern front edged the day but no question where the Dunlin had got their act together - Venus Pool!