Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Portland's Wildlife - 18th to 21st August 2014

Male Common Darter dragonfly
Portland Bird Observatory isn't just good for birds. This Common Darter was buzzing around the pond at the Observatory and finally I managed to photograph it when it was settled.

Female Emperor dragonfly 
To my surprise this was a female Emperor dragonfly. It is a female because it is laying eggs in the pond. This particular female is very colourful.

Clouded Yellow
When I went up to the top fields with Joe Stockwell to see what was in the nets I was pleasantly surprised with this Clouded Yellow which settled; there was nothing much in the nets though.

Can you guess what these are? Well I'll tell you because it is virtually impossible, they are dolphins! Unusual to see them pass the Bill.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Portland Bird Observatory - 18th to 21st August 2014

Portland Bird Observatory
We went to the Portland Bird Observatory for a three night stay and it didn't disappoint. From Willow Warblers to Blackcaps, it was a great trip. Don't forget rainbows too!

The Obs in its glory!
As soon as I saw the rain, the first thing that came into my head was to get the Obs and the rainbow together. And that's what I did.

Juvenile Willow Warbler
I was allowed to go on some ringing trips in the garden and this was one of the juvenile Willow Warblers that was ringed. Thank you to the ringers for making this possible.

Guess why this is called a Blackcap! This was one of the many wonderful birds ringed at the Obs. There are more blogs coming soon on our trip to Portland so stay tuned...........

Sunday, 17 August 2014

The Holiday so far - 17th August 2014

Drip, Drip, Dip

As the title suggests, the rain was pouring down at the site where a Pacific Golden Plover had made camp for the past week. The approximately one mile long walk was just not at all appealing. Eventually we broke, the rain gradually died down and we set off on a long trek to find at the end that the bird had flown even further up the reserve. Not giving up, we tried to follow what seemed like an invisible bird. At the top hide a Linnet came into view. Time got the better of us though, we had to leave to carry on our journey to Derby. On the way back to the car we met Peter Moore who was unamused when we told him that the bird had flown off.

Where were the Wheatears?
We went out for some fresh air at Durlston to look for Wheatears but didn't manage to see much. Unfortunately folks, I could only manage some juvenile Stonechats and a Greenfinch.

Juvenile Stonechat
 A Stonechat which I manged to catch in mid-hop (not sure that's a word)!

During Dad's breakfast, a Greenfinch came in on a tree and sat nicely for a while.

Lots of Waders, not just the bird kind

Finally, we found some waders at Ferrybridge. We nearly always get the tide wrong but this time we got it right. Dunlin and Sanderling were on the agenda today.

Not sure that they know where the edge is! 
Some people think that wading around in the middle of the flats is the edge! This is so annoying as the people cannot seem to see the birds as they walk though the previously landed flocks of birds.

The Sanderling, another one of the common waders out on the Ferrybridge mudflats although not many of these birds seen today.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Hen Harrier Day - 10th August 2014

Okay, I don't have any Hen Harrier shots but I do have some people protesting for Hen Harriers not to be shot on Grouse moors. The next best thing, right. Please support the campaign for Hen Harriers and against wildlife crime.

Mute Swan
I took the advantage of the wildlife at Radipole and managed to rustle up a Mute Swan in flight.

Great Crested Grebe
A young Great Crested Grebe swam past the reeds in front of me. At the time, I had no idea what on earth it was, so I was slightly disappointed when I found out.

We went down for a very short and late sea watch at Portland and weren't let down by the Gannets. Too far for good pics but why not try.