Saturday, 17 January 2009

Whitemoor Haye - Swanning around

On my travels 'talking' again and this time to Wall in Staffs. This is just a few minutes down the road from Chasewater so no prizes for guessing where I stopped on the way! I had the drake Smew bearing down on me too, 60m from the West bank and closing in....

That is, until the water ski fraternity outboarded in and flushed just about every duck from the water. Thanks guys, I'm so glad you fell in!

Time to reappraise the day and the short journey to Whitemoor Haye was brought forward where a good gathering of swans was anticipated,including Bewick's. Now, forgive my enthusiasm but Bewicks Swans are just so utterly adorable and as I didn't see a single one last year, these were to be the highlight of the day!

It all so nearly went wrong too! There they were - five including a juvenile plus two Whoopers and loads of Mutes. I'd just managed a couple of shots when a couple of local farmworkers came along and systematically flushed the lot from the field (another 'thanks guys'!!) I was being ironic but then, thinking about it, I wouldn't have got a flight shot without you, so - maybe it really is, thanks guys!

Lucky Jim managed to pick out a Bewick's amongst the aerial mayhem...

Eventually they returned in dribs and drabs, aren't Bewick's simply gorgeous birds?

Here's another one with a neaby Whooper for comparison.....

The youngster was busy feeding under the watchful gaze of one of the parents. Bit of an 'ugly duckling' at this stage but what a stunner you'll be when grown up!!

More Mute Swans eventually returned to the field - glad I was upwind, ideally placed to watch them come in!

It was all over too soon and a return visit to Chasewater was memorable for the lack of any Gulls of real interest....

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