Monday, 26 April 2010

Venus Pool - The Osprey

The main reason for my visit to Venus
was to see the Osprey and hopefully
get a few photograph's.

I didn't have to wait too long for this
years visitor to drop in, just out the
corner of eye I could see him gliding
towards the pool. As he made his way
over the pool the Gull's and Crow's made
to the air doing their best to try and
warn him off.

Little seemed to bother him as he
continued to scour the water in search of
his next meal.

Shaking with nerves as he drew closer, I
could hardly believe my eye's when he
stopped and hovered in front of me.

Hovering just as if he were a Kestrel
over a meadow, slowly moving towards
the water before Splash!!....He was


He made three visit's in all throughout
the day, giving me enough chances to
get a few decent shot's.

As I watched over the pool out the corner
of my eye I could see a large dark bird
moving from left to right, I instantly
thought the Osprey was trying to come
in low.

I couldn't believe it when I finally realised
it was a Marsh Harrier (quite a rarity
in these parts) It made a few passes
over the reeds before hovering and finally
dropping down. It stayed down for at least
five minutes before flying up and out of

What a day!...

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Venus Pool - The New Hide

I settled down into the new hide and
straight away spotted an Oystercatcher
sitting on the island to my left, a quick
photograph confirmed she was sitting
on two eggs, just hope they sit them
the full term.

All the Oystercatchers in my experience
tend to move off eggs quite often, not sure
if it's because there young inexperienced
birds or they just get easily disturbed.
In this case the only thing I could see
that may put them off was the occasional
visit from another Oystercatcher, mind
you he /she was soon seen off.

Throughout the rest of the day the
Oystercatchers made regular changeovers
for sitting giving me the perfect opportunity
for a few flight shot's.

Straight out in front of the hide is another
island which gave more opportunities
throughout the course of day for Little
Ringed Plover, Oystercatcher and Yellow

Monday, 19 April 2010

Venus Pool - The Start

This session was from about two weeks
ago, bit late I know but I just can't seem to
find 5 minutes to write them up lately.

Anyway!.. Venus Pool. A popular wetland
reserve that occassionaly has an attractive
An Osprey!

I first come here at the back end of
last year trying to photograph them.
I'd only just started my photography
then and the shot's I did manage wasn't
the really the best, mainly record shot's.

This year I'd hoped it would be a little
different, having a little knowledge from
last year I opted to try the causeway
between the two pool's. This is where
last years bird seemed to like catching it's

I waited patiently for a couple of hours
but nothing showed up.

Next I moved up to the hides on Venus
just in case it decided to drop in there. I
arrived to find Snipe and Lapwing close by
probing the mud in search of thier breakfast.

As the light wasn't the best I decided to move
down to the new hide.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Worcestershire Hoopoe

I'd already planned a family day out for
kid's last Saturday... A Day in Brean. It
was forecast to be a nice day so I thought
we'd make the most of it.

Before we were about to set off I checked the
local birding news (usually do in the morning
you never know what's gonna turn up) I couldn't
believe it when I see the Hoopoe reported over
at Lower Moor in Pershore, hoping it would stay
(as it was to be a first for me) I planned a
trip over when I got back.

I arrived back about 05.30pm and with the light
fading fast I grabbed my gear and made my way
over to Pershore.

I eventually found the pathway through to
where it had first been reported and began my
search. I wasn't the only one there a few more
birders started to appear after a while and with all
the searching none of us could find it.

Time was pressing on an the light was fading, I
decided to take a quick look in the actual
caravan park as it had been reported in there
quite often.

I walked through to what looked like building
site and stood by the gate, not really sure
whether or not to enter.
Everywhere I looked said Private Property.

I eventually plucked up the courage and
wandered through, I'm glad I did as I found
the Hoopoe quietly probing in the grass.
I took several shots none of which were really
any good however I did manage a few half decent
record shots.

Good end to a nice day!

Sunday, 11 April 2010

The Malverns

I'd decided the Easter weekend would be
spent locally, namely the Malvern Hill's.

Ring Ouzel and Wheatear would be the main
target and possibly Redstart, Report's
during the the week included a single
Wheatear and a single Ring Ouzel, hoping
that they stay for the weekend I made
my why up to Britishcamp first thing
Sunday morning.

A quick scout around revealed a few Meadow

I then started to work my way around to
the S/E side of the hill where the Ring Ouzel
had previously been reported. I stopped to
have a quick look and before I could get my
hand on my bins a Ring Ouzel flew by!.. landing
100yrds away, I was just about to reach for
the camera but before I could it was off again
and with a small flap of it's wings into the wind
it made some 250yrds back to where I just
came from....Bugger!!

I made my back to where I see it land to find it
calling in the brambles near the path.
I slowly moved forward and as I did it started
to move further and further up the hill
eventually coming to a stop on the hillside.

I spent a good while after getting the Ring Ouzel
searching around but I couldn't locate the
Wheatear however I did manage a Redstart
and a Mistle thrush.

Not a bad day at all.

Monday, 5 April 2010

South Gloucestershire!

Firstly I tried Ashleworth Ham to see
if I could locate the Great White Egret
that had been reported earlier in the week.

I arrived at 6.30am and scoured the Ham
vigorously for a good hour with no joy. I did
see plenty of other stuff though!... Teal, Canada
Geese and Heron defiantly worth another visit
I think. I will say though for anyone considering
photography at the Ham is that everything is
a fair way off.

Next I made my way to Sharpness Docks
where a Female Black Redstart had now been
for at least three months. I've seen it before but
my last trip was a waste of time really, for
photo's anyway. One of those dark days not
really getting light at all.

It was a different story this time though good
sunshine and an approachable bird makes
good for some nice photo's, well a bit of
chasing around as well.

I sat and watched the Black Redstart hopping
from the Ned West Building onto the floor and
then the trees to finally the roof of the end
house, it seemed to be it's usual route.

There was a point though that I followed it
from garden to garden trying to get a decent
shot, It was one of those times that I didn't really
pay any attention to what I was actually doing
and before I knew it I'd covered about 500yrds
basically going from one end of the street to
the other in hot pursuit....what we do for a

Next it was onto Aust!...

I arrived to find good numbers of Skylark and
Meadow Pipit although not much else, think I
may have been a bit early another week or two

I went onto Northwick Warth where I met
up with Paul Bowerman, after a brief chat with
Paul he showed me a little spot where I could
get a few nice shot's of Turnstone and possibly
a Dunlin.

Cheers Paul!..Until next time.