Coronation pit, Stewartby. June 2008

An early morning walk round the pit and good numbers of willow warbler and whitethroat were evident. On the water only mute swan and canada geese with young made up the numbers with coot and a couple of great crested grebes thrown in. A group of four oystercatchers circled over noisely a few times but moved on over the railway line.

An unexpected bonus was a grass snake sunning itself on some bramble, as i approached it moved away deeper into the bush but i got a record shot showing the milky eyes, sign of shedding skin due. It was 2ft plus in size.

It was still fairly breezy and not too many butterflies were seen, just a speckled wood to photo. A large family group of noisy long tailed tits were unfazed by my appearance and a couple of these brown/white fluffies' came close.

I eventually found a couple of dragonflies but numbers were not that numerous. A black tailed skimmer posed well while sunning and the only other one seen was a common darter. A nice sight whilst watching these was a lesser whitethroat which was actively moving from one side of the track to the other, joined by another and then what looked like a third,family group?. and only one bird posing for a snapshot.

Fen drayton Cambridgeshire. June 2008

I wanted to visit Fen Drayton to obtain some images of Common Whitethroat, with the hope of some damselfly and dragonfly species as well. The day started nice and bright and there were plenty of whitethroat about, the damselflies were everywhere.

I then located a pair of whitethroat where I could hide up next to a bush close by and positioned myself to get some shots as they landed on a set of regularly used perches. It was just a case of waiting for them to arrive. Not to long had passed before they started to appear complete with food in bill.
I then caught sight of them taking the food to a fledgling tucked away in a small bush. I continued to sit tight and then the young'ens , there were now 2 on show, began to clamber around the undergrowth and came within distance to grab a couple of shots.

Once i had gotten some decent shots i left them to it. I also obtained some images of a Black tailed Skimmer and a Scarce Chaser along with a handfull of Red eyed damselflies, both these last two were new for me. I wanted to try getting some shots of the reed warblers but the weather turned and the clouds blocked out the light so it was time to head home with what id got.

Scarce Chaser
Red eyed Damselfly
Black tailed Skimmer

Thrush Nightingale. Dunwich Suffolk.June 8th.

An early morning start with sarah to Dunwich and upon opening the car door in the car park we were greeted with the call of the Thrush nightingale. Seeing it was another matter and after it relocated a couple of times i grabbed my first views of its head as it was singing from deep in the canopy.
And no sooner as sarah rejoined me along with our grunting bulldog it relocated again further down the hill along the edge of the minsmere reserve and this time sat up in the open for everyone to get decent views, and considering the distance and elusiveness of the bird i was well happy to get these record shots of a new species.

June 2008.


Trumpeter Finch.Blakeney Point.Norfolk

After saying it time after time 'that's the last time i walk that', there i was trudging along from Cley to Blakeney point. This time to catch up with the trumpeter finch. After what seemed an eternity i arrived at the point and made my way to the small gathering of birders that had made the journey by boat.

I picked up on the location of the finch once set up and it then flew a short distance overhead further along the track. It then disappeared into a hollow amongst the dunes until disturbed by a warden it then relocated onto the stony area near the tracks leading to the plantation.

Although at a distance for my lens it showed well whilst continually feeding on the plants and i was able to fire off quite a few shots. It would vanish behind clumps of vegetation and in hollows it frequented but would eventually appear again.

The rump showed a lovely pale pink colouration along with the prominent chunky orange bill and orange/pink legs. The plumage was a buffish sort of grey with pale edging to the wing feathers and pale surround around the eye.

It then became more mobile after feeding spells and was quite elusive at times venturing to the point and apparently flew towards morston quay before turning back. It seemed to return to the same area most times though and mixed in with some linnets in flight before parting from them and returning to the stony area and sueda.

On the way back to the car at Cley i watched the Little terns in flight and displaying on the beach complete with their catch,trying to impress. I grabbed a few shots before heading on and this time the journey wasn't as exhausting due to the tide being out and the ground being firmer nearer the shoreline.

Will i walk to the point again? Probably....