Monday, February 07, 2011

Bigfoot birding

So there I was settled down to try and snap a few more birds at Rich's field, when an avian yeti appeared in front of the lens.
Until then I'd had a chance to snap a few more of the regulars, although the fawn coloured greenfinch still eludes me.

As you will surely have guessed the clue to the ownership of the feet lies in the grain the house sparrow is feeding on ......
Still this is not the most bizarre invader of one of my feeding stations. Many years ago when I first was reigniting my interest in photography I heard of a place in the Forest of Dean (I know a great woodland going cheap to anyone who'll take it off the Tory hands) where the mythical hawfinch could be found. I didn't have a hide, but put down some seed and hid behind a tree. You can imagine my surprise when this creature emerged!
The hawfinch did eventually appear, and this was a real spur to me - even if my camera kit fell well short of range!

One bit of sad news. Rich's barn owls reared several chicks to fledging this year, and I had a few lovely late evenings watching them flitting around the trees and fields. Sadly in October one was found dead 11km away alongside a road near Stroat. Many barn owls are lost this way, presumably a combination of their hunting style and the lack of suitable pasture leading to roadside verge use.
I had been worried how the parents had survived the winter, so set up my newly acquired trail cam on a roost site they often use - judging by the pellets. it was great to find that they were both alive and well despite the snow. Click the image for a larger view.
From Rich's Field

No comments: