Monday, October 21, 2013

Two Hour Slot

The weekend weather was shocking, meaning two blank days for the blog, so apologies for readers who looked in for recent news - there wasn’t any. More rain throughout this morning but brightening skies after lunch gave me a couple of hours out at Pilling for a brief posting. 

I walked from Fluke in time to see a number of Whooper Swans coming to land on the marsh - yes the sun was out briefly for the 14 Whoopers and 40+ Shelduck on the stubble/marsh. Also 170 Jackdaw, 400+ Starling, 120 Woodpigeon and 3 Stock Dove. Three Reed Buntings and 8 Tree Sparrows at the gate with 10+ Skylarks and 2 Chaffinch on the cut maize. 

Whooper Swan

Something stirred the Starlings, Crows and Jackdaws from the marsh. It was a Peregrine giving as good as it got when a couple of the Carrion Crows dived at it, the Peregrine calling loudly, twisting over and showing the crows sight of its talons before in an effortless split second it cruised away, leaving the crows in the distance. Sorry, it’s the usual view and image of our local Peregrines, a glimpse at the background landscape shows the distances they can cover in almost the blink of an eye. 

Peregrine

I walked up to Pilling Water in time to catch the last of the tide and wildfowl heading back out to the marsh - 400+ Teal, 70+ Pintail, 180+ Wigeon, 4 Cormorant. Eight Little Egrets, 4 Snipe, 1 Grey Heron and 1 Kingfisher at Pilling Water. Just a couple of Goldfinch, 3 Meadow Pipits, 1 Pied Wagtail and another 18/20 Skylarks at the rapidly receding tideline. 

I watched some 40+ Black-tailed Godwits coming and going from the marsh and the wildfowler’s pools. Dark cloud threatned again and I switched to ISO800 and tried for a few pictures. 

Black-tailed Godwits are such distinctive, striking waders that they can’t be mistaken for any other species. I just love watching them coming in to land, their black & white shapes twisting and turning through the sky, whiffling down to the water looking for all the world like oversize Snipe. 

Black-tailed Godwit

Black-tailed Godwit

Fingers crossed for sunshine, birding and more news very soon on Another Bird Blog.

In the meantime linking to Paying Ready Attention Gallery . Pay a visit for more birds from around the world.

19 comments:

Margaret Adamson said...

HI Phil Loved seeing the Whoppers

Wally Jones said...

Gorgeous Godwits! I can relate to the view of the Peregrine - usually "fleeting".

Hope you have more sunshine and birds this week, Phil.

Andrew Fulton said...

Wonderful birds to see...

Carole M. said...

great pickups of the Black-tailed Godwits Phil

Our photos said...

Beautiful are the birds photos!
Greetings, RW & SK

TexWisGirl said...

neat in-flight shots!

Andrea said...

With all of those bird around, I am surprised the Peregrin didn't stop in to dine. They are fast and you were good to catch that shot of him. Enjoyed the other birds as well ... I'm not familier with the whopper Swan ... we have a small group of Whooping Cranes near us ... they are endangered. Will have to look up your swans and learn about them. Wonderful post in spite of bad weather.

Andrea @ From The Sol

Karen said...

You take fantastic in-flight shots Phil!

Dave said...

This recent weather has depressed me Phil, just haven't had the camera out at all. Started to enjoy the garden birding again. Simple things like the returning Blackbirds have been a highlight!

Lovely Whoopers, a sure sign and reminder of winter

Gunilla Bäck said...

I love the photo of the flying swans. We still have swans here too, but the ones I saw were too far away to get decent photos.

Amanda said...

I like the shot showing their black tails, it's good when they have names that help with id!

genie said...

The birds coming in for a landing are so impressive. What great captures.

mick said...

Great photos of the Black-tailed Godwits. A few come down this way every year but you really have to look for them among the 100s and even 1000s of Bar-tailed Godwits - and I have yet to get good photos of them!

Rajesh said...

Great shots of birds in flight.

Jim said...

Good captures.

Lou Mary said...

Great godwit photos Phil! Oversized snipe describes them perfectly!

Lou Mary said...

Great godwit photos Phil! Oversized snipe describes them perfectly!

Dave said...

Phil, Will put a species list from SA up on my Blog over the weekend

Dave

Mary Howell Cromer said...

I am back ;)
Yeah!!!
Those Godwits are glorious in flight~

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