Friday 30 July 2021

Venus Pool - Sanderling

News of a decent wader at Venus Pool is always a welcome wake up call and a Sanderling was found first thing by John Martin. It was very mobile on the middle island on arrival but fortunately after an hour or so, relocated to the the mud in front of the main hide!

Constantly feeding, in the low light it was a nightmare to get a decent angle or pics at all! 

But you have to persevere...

And once away from the mud and white water, a bit of colour in the pictures helped the cause?

Perhaps the only time I saw it motionless, following a wash and brush up!

Then that was it, relocating to the middle island after being spooked by corvids...

Tuesday 27 July 2021

Wood Lane - Garganey

 Picking up the car after a service, I spotted an intriguing post on RBA... 'Garganey at Wood Lane' as it was less than 30 mins away, it would have been rude to overlook it? Initially, it couldn't be further away from Lapwing hide if it tried!

But eventually paddled half way across the scrape until turned back by the Moorhens!

Nice! It's been a while since I've seen one!

Sunday 25 July 2021

Prees Heath - Purple Hairstreaks

After dipping Purple Hairstreak at Prees Heath early on and then managing decent results with talisman Dave Chapman on the 16th, we were back again hoping for better opportunities? Better indeed, we had astonishing views of several down low in an oak and they weren't going anywhere!

Two together to kick off!

And then slowly but surely some opening wing moments...

A smart female with much less purple in the upperwing than the male!

Males were more numerous and even more obliging!

Stunning moements!

It was worth seeing in close up what they were us to? Feeding on insect honeydew ...

And so totally preoccupied, the macro lens was brought into play!

A simply amazing session :-)

Friday 23 July 2021

Venus Pool - Welcome back!

It's been a long time! In fact, the last time I walked into a hide at VP was 17th February 2020! The pool looks the same, the grass and vegetation have gone crazy but the birds remain pretty predictable! 

Green Sandpiper, there were five in all, here's four of them...

Maybe not so predictable! Breeding success for the long sitting Little Ringed Plover with two juvs presumably home grown?

Finally, as good an opportunity for a Little Egret image?

Welcome back indeed!

Friday 16 July 2021

Prees Heath - Purple Hairstreaks

A second attempt at these notoriously tricky butterflies with 'good luck' charmer Dave Chapman. Purple Hairstreaks are easy to see, if you look up at the top of the Oak trees they frequent but a nightmare to get them down low enough for photography. With a little persuasion, one or two entered the acceptable zone...

Open wing moments just didn't happen! A flicker of wing separation on a couple of occasions but that was your lot!

Best described as charismatic rather than beautiful, these are probably the best I've managed of this species?

As for the open wing shot? One day...

Thursday 1 July 2021

Caswell Bay - Mediterranean Gull

Thought it might make a change to post some bird images! A family holiday on the Gower didn't produce that much, although I was hoping the briefly seen Pacific Swift came my way? So, my travelling light lens  / camera was in the bag during a morning on the beach at Caswell Bay.

It's a busy tourist beach but that never deters Mediterranean Gulls and there was one loitering around the shore break...

If you totted up all the gull species images on this blog, I have no doubt Med Gulls would be the clear winner! They are so photogenic and here's some more...

But there's only so many static poses and this bird was quite mobile!

As the tide came in it seemed to be quite preoccupied in picking up tiny morsels...

And in this short series he clearly picked up something from the sand in flight!

You have to use the eye of faith but it looks like a small Shrimp species...

And no, I'm not adding crustaceans to my interests!!

'Footnote' The eagle-eyed amongst you may have noted that the right foot / lower leg is missing! I've seen a few over the years in the Gower with this deformity but haven't a clue how it arises?