Saturday, July 18, 2009

First films

It's been ages since we did some local birding and with Helen improving week by week we decided to stretch our legs around Pitsford.

We parked in the causeway car park and deposited around 5 kilos of wheat for the local ducks and geese then set off around the nature reserve.

From the first hide we watched the activity on the Tern rafts which mostly consisted of adult birds luring the youngsters into the air by drawing them to food. Here a juvenile Common Tern is calling for a meal:

Whilst the Adult has stopped off from flying around the juvenile and rafts for a breather and to sound more encouragement:

It looks like it's been a good year for the Terns, which is excellent. Anglian Water and the warden do an excellent job at Pitsford, they really do. Further round the reserve a juvenile Long-tailed Tit was part of a large group moving through the hawthorns:

At one point we can have been no more than twenty yards from this deer, I think a Muntjac, but it took ages for it to realise we were watching it

Further still we managed to get pretty close to a hare on the path too, this is the best view we've had of a hare yet:

Whilst busy enough with birds, we didn't see that many. However the reserve is absolutely bursting with life, with damsel flies and particularly butterflies everywhere. Amongst many others we saw this unidentified species:

A Small White:

A Ringlet:

A Painted Lady:

A Meadow Brown:

A Large White:

and finally a Gatekeeper:

I reckon we probably saw at least another eight species on our walk today, perhaps even more. A few more birds did show themselves, I believe this is a juvenile Willow Warbler:

and this a juvenile Chiffchaff:

Having completed the walk we headed back home. I have been persuaded by a friend of our ours to invest in a small video camera to compliment my photography but also to bring a bit more life to the garden birds and wildlife. I have included here my very first attempts, recorded this afternoon, please excuse the very poor quality of the camerawork, but I hope you enjoy the content. First up a wild rabbit chilling out in the garden, which we always take as a compliment:

Next one of the many juvenile Blackbirds, raised on mostly sultanas judging by our bird food bills, and like the rabbit, enjoying the sunshine and the opportunity to relax:

Last-up for today, Common Starlings fighting over a fat lump. The juveniles have taken to waiting around for one to 'appear' which they tend to do every couple of days. The fastest they've consumed one is a little over an hour:

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