Sunday, 11 March 2012

Searching for spring

Unusually, Dave arrived on site a good half hour before I did, but he was going to have to leave at 10.00am. We then walked the site discussing what birds were on our wish list for today. Unfortunately on the wish list was where they remained, and by the time Dave had to go the highlights were 22 Snipe, the Green Sandpiper, and the odd Redpoll. It was a lovely sunny day, so I decided that as the air was full of Skylark song, I would try to estimate the number of territories. I came up with 19 which is about the number I usually get, although this is lower than Jonathan Bowley's counts from earlier years. As it was so sunny I had decided to bring my camera and what follows is the Morton Bagot Birder guide to truly awful wildlife photography. My technique is to wander about with no attempt at concealment vaguely hoping that a bird, any bird, will be so good as to land in front of me and then remain in the same place for at least five minutes while I attempt to take a shot of it down my scope. This of course doesn't work, so I switch to plan B which is to aim the camera at the pool and photograph anything that happens to get in the way. This proves barely more successful,  as my shots of blurred Mallards and Teal demonstrate. On the return journey I noticed that the colony of communal mining bees (species unknown) is active. My drive back home produces my first butterflies of the year, two Brimstones, to usher in spring.

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