Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Never ignore a muddy puddle!

I've posted before about my love of t'internet, and I really do wonder how I ever got by without it in the past. Take this weekend for example. I'd seen some sightings on a website, followed through with pictures from another, googled a venue and directions, checked to see that the weather was cloud heading in from the east and decided to head west into darkest Glamorganshire rather than try for frogs in the forest. I reckon it might still be a bit cool this year for them, but who knows.

Anyway I arrived at the venue and knew where to go from the sightings page. First glance wasn't hugely inspiring - a bit of a muddy puddle. Actually that's not fair, there was an area of mud in the middle of a small pond surrounded by reedmace. No sign of the target, and at first some doubts about where I could go to snap it/them. The pond wasn't very big so a few steps down I was peering into the reeds when a small, skinny chicken like bird shot out the back into the trees. Cursing mildly under my breath I looked again at the pond, the light and found somewhere to tuck in and wait. Shortly two water rails appeared at the back and drifted away again. Fingers crossed. I only ever saw one at any time after that, but the light shone (mostly) for a couple of hours and I got some snaps. At times the rail was so close I couldn't focus, let alone frame it. They are busy birds and many pictures were just a bit blurred even at 1/800th sec, but I was pretty pleased with the views I finally ended up with. Well worth the welly full of water (I didn't go in too deep, but ended up kneeling in the water with one knee for too long. As well as a very chilled knee when I stood up all the water that had wicked into my trousers ran into the boot. Still, I got the angles!).

(Bit frustrated with that last shot. I'd framed the one before to get the reflection but when it moved I didn't reframe enough - it did happen quite quickly - and snipped the crown off the reflection)

As you can see the moorhens eventually plucked up the courage to make an appearance as well.

These pictures are definitely better viewed HERE in the latest pictures album.
Use the slideshow feature for best views.

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