Saturday 29 January 2022

Priorslee Lake - Great Black-backed Gull

If you 'not sure' or only think the gull you are looking at might be Great Black-backed Gull, then it's probably a Lesser? They are certainly uncommon in Shropshire but every now and then one drops in at a roost or elsewhere...

The first clue of GBBG jizz is - it's a brute and smaller gulls tend give them a wide berth.

If you are still unsure and there's a few Lessers nearby, the comparison in size is a no brainer decision! The mantle is always greyish black and clearly darker than andy of the Lesser races. The presence of black on the bill may indicate it's a fourth winter rather than full adult winter.

In flight it is more ponderous with head and neck well protruding... 

The barrel shaped body clearly seen here.

Off and away into the light...

Thursday 27 January 2022

Venus Pool - Great White Egret

The Great White Egret is still putting in an appearance at Venus Pool and each visit seems to produce the same response?

Here comes the Heron...

This really isn't worth the trouble?

Same old story!

Shame they weren't tighter together tho!

Venus Pool - Little Egret flight

Little Egret are usually seen daily at VP, which means they are often ignored but given the good light I couldn't resist this one taking off...

Wonder why the Herons don't chase these off?

Venus Pool - Green Sandpiper

The sun was shining and I temporarily demoted the Great White Egret so that this Green Sandpiper could be bird of the visit! It dropped right in front of the Memorial hide....

Not sure who was more surprised?

Best foot forward...

And the other...

Then after a quick preen it flew north!

Wednesday 12 January 2022

Venus Pool - Stonechat

Probably the one I saw on NYD, this long-staying male Stonechat finally gave itself up for me today -  totally out of character with how obliging it was! Mobile at first, I would have been happy with these more 'distant' views!

But then it seemed to prefer one particular branch, time to try various backgrounds?

Yep, I couldn't make my mind up so needed to compare all three here!

Sunday 9 January 2022

Melverley Floods - Whooper swans

This was my fourth visit to the area which had been pretty unproductive on the Whooper Swan front! Today however, I was looking at a decent number, nineteen in total and they were not too distant!

There were two family group, here with two juvs (plus one)...

Adults were randomly scattered around...

Another family group, this time with three juvs!

The interaction between swans wasn't always good natured as the pair of Mute Swans who considered this area as home, kept trying to evict the interlopers (even various other Mutes too!)

It was mostly posturing and spitting none of the swans  really gave way

Wingflaps too!

Finally order was restored with no victor declared!

Filling the frame this time!

The big family serenely paddling to quieter waters!

My annual Whooper fix at last!

Melverley Floods - Red Kite

I was meant to be concentrating on the swans but spotted some movement out of the corner of eye... A Red Kite...

Into some blue sky...

Probably the first worthwhile images of the the year? Blue sky has been a limited commodity for a month or so!!