Little Paxton, Cambridgeshire.March 2009.

I spent a couple of mornings trying to capture the cormorants and herons gathering nesting material. I positioned myself where some of them would bank round whilst on their way back to the nest, or on their way out to forage for twigs and branches.

The sheer size of some branches they were holding were large enough let alone trying to deal with flying with them. Some would land in the water to retrieve dropped twigs/branches or land with what they were carrying and then after some repositioning they would take a long run up and take to the air circle round then return to the nest.

And with all the birds present i did not see one feeding, they were all too busy collecting material for their nests. There was a single male smew in the bay close to where i was set up, but it could be elusive at times and just vanish amongst the tangle of tree roots.

There were a hand full of herons around but they only used the same flight paths as the cormorants on a few occasions, but they were very vocal and territorial, seeing off cormorants on the same nesting branch as them.

The geese were very vocal and actively aggressive towards opportunists muscling in on their girls. One pair of Canada geese were locked in combat for some time, both gripping each other by the neck and thrashing the wings at each other.They looked exhausted as one finally let go and departed very vocally announcing its disappointment in losing. And it was nice to hear chiffchaffs for the first time this year too.