Friday, 31 July 2015

Re-tern to Swillington Ings

Lots of jobs to do today, cutting the grass, shopping, digging up tree stumps, so lunch was spent watching England win the third test. I then decided to have another go at taking pictures of the terns as they fly past the hide over looking Astley Lake. It was 17:15 when I arrived and the light was not good, however it did imorive slightly.

Another couple of birders joined me in the hide and I enjoyed the company. The tern did eventually fly past the hide, but even with the smaller lens on the camera I struggled to get the shot I hoped for.

I am going to have to practice a lot more to try to get some better pictures.
I changed lens and took a few shots with the longer lens, trying to take advantage of the sunlight.

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Thursday afternoon at Swillington Ings.

It was quarter past three when I arrived at the hide overlooking Astley Lake. On the grass on the opposite side of the water greylag geese sat, sheltering from another rain shower.
The visitor centre is still not open at St. Aidans.
Meanwhile a swallow was hunting for insects above the weir. No shot of the swallow, but the weir was easier to shoot!
A common tern was also fishing but I could not get a decent shot.
 A single swift was flying over the water, and sand martins and house martins were also flying about hunting insects. Cormorant were stood on a rail, one of them was holding its wings out to dry.
26 different kind of birds in two hours,  a pleasant couple of hours out of the rain.

Wednesday afternoon at North Cave Wetlands

It was just before noon as I arrived at North Cave, and as I got out of the car the sun started to shine, so I decided to go for a walk down a path on the reserve that is a good place to see butterflies etc. The sunshine did not last for many minutes but I managed to get some photos of the insects I could see.

I then had a walk around the path that goes around the edge of the reserve.  A male blackbird was sat on the path enjoying the sunshine.
Along the hedgerow near the Reed bed lake young birds were busy feeding. I managed to get a couple of shots of blue tits and long tailed tits.

It started to rain so I had to walk quicker than planned to the Turret hide to shelter. On the way I passed this pond with water lilies in.
The variety of colour in the flowers was amazing.
I eventually ended up in Crosslands hide. I had just finished eating my lunch when a the chap who manages the reserve came into the hide and asked for some help. I volunteered and held his "ruler" while he used his theodolite to measure the height of the water in the scrape.
Greylag geese were the most numerous bird present then lapwings.

     Large numbers of coots were swimming about.
A family of tufted ducks were busy feeding.
A very pleasant afternoon.

Saturday, 25 July 2015

Out and about with Chris.

Last Saturday Chris and I had a day out. We started at Old Moor, where we had distant views of a wood sandpiper. We then went to Frampton Marsh in the hope of seeing curlew sandpiper and little stint, sadly we saw neither.
Today we set off for Derbyshire, to Ogston Reservoir, where an osprey had been reported.

 We had not been in the car park long when other birders told us where to look at the osprey. A very distant shot.

We waited for another half an hour but the bird did not show so we set of for Lincolnshire where we hoped to see some butterflies. The weather was not the best for butterflies and during a walk around the garden near the visitor centre we did not see a single butterfly. So off we walked into the wood where we saw a total of 12 different butterflies, mostly when we got the odd burst of sunlight.

We saw this beautiful demoiselle damsel fly, but could not get a clean shot.
Further on we saw several comma butterflies.

We also saw several skipper butterflies.
A 5 spot burnet moth
We also saw this dragonfly which I think is a brown hawker

Another brilliant day out thanks to Chris.