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Sunday, 28 January 2018

Long Tailed Duck, Grey Plover, Bullfinch and the Pied Wagtail and the Weevil!

  This week I managed to get closer views of a drake Long Tailed Duck that had been at Chew Valley Lake in North Somerset before Christmas. It had relocated to Barrow Tanks reservoir near Bristol and when I popped in it obligingly flew in from the back of the reservoir to nearer the little car-park. This is a very scarce duck, but an absolute beauty.
  I watched it diving for prey for a few minutes and took some shots when it resurfaced.

I had a look in Bicknoller churchyard for the Hawfinch again on a miserable gloomy morning, but only saw it in the distance very briefly. I also saw a distant pair of Bullfinches. I've never had a close shot of these gorgeous finches and today was no better, but it's one of the birds I'd love to photograph properly! Unfortunately they're not common at all on the Somerset Levels where I live.
    Also in the churchyard was a very confiding Goldcrest. These tiny birds you can get close to, but they're still very difficult to photograph as they are constantly on the move looking for spiders and bugs in bushes and trees and they rarely sit out in the open. I did get some ok shots though, despite the bad light.

  Also seen and photographed during the last week were various waders at Doniford Bay in Somerset, that let me get a little closer than waders on an open beach normally do!
These included Grey Plovers, Oystercatchers, Dunlin and Turnstones.
Finally I photographed some common birds at the coast in Portishead, including a Pied Wagtail that had caught a tiny Weevil and was struggling to get it down it's mouth! The weevil spent the next minute or so clinging onto the top of the Wagtail beaks, predator and prey eye to eye!
  I'm not sure if the Weevil finally escaped or not, as the Wagtail wandered off with the bug still clinging on for it's life and disappeared from view...

Here are the photo's I've taken during the last week;

^Above^ - The beautiful male Long Tailed Duck at Barrow Tanks.  (With Tufted Duck and Great Crested Grebe in the bottom pic)

^Above^ - Little Grebe at Barrow Tanks.

^Above^ - Grey Heron at Barrow Tanks.

^Above^ - Pied Wagtail before and after picking up it's Weevil 'friend' at Portishead.

^Above^ - Dunnocks at Portishead.

^Above^ - Male Blackbird with worm at Portishead.

^Above^ - Female Blackbirds at Portishead.

^Above^ - Blue Tit at Portishead.

^Above^ - Robins at Portishead.

^Above^ - Meadow Pipit at Doniford Bay.

^Above^ - Carrion Crows at Portishead.

^Above^ - Goldcrest at Bicknoller churchyard.

^Above^ - Hawfinch at Bicknoller.

^Above^ - Bullfinches at Bicknoller

^Above^ - Greenfinch at Bicknoller.

^Above^ - Mistle Thrush at Bicknoller.

^Above^ - Ancient stocks in Bicknoller churchyard!

Common Sandpiper at Chew Valley Lake.

^Above^ - Curlew at Watchet.

^Above^ - Dunlin at Doniford Bay. (With Oystercatchers and Black Headed Gulls)

^Above^ - Grey Plovers at Doniford Bay (With Turnstone, bottom 2 pics).

^Above^ - Grey Plover, 2 Dunlin and a Turnstone at Doniford Bay.

^Above^ - Oystercatchers at Doniford Bay.

^Above^ - Turnstones at Doniford Bay.

^Above^ - Carrion Crow at Doniford Bay.

^Above^ - Meadow Pipits at Watchet.

^Above^ - Ringed Plovers at Watchet.

^Above^ - Rock Pipit at Doniford Bay.

^Above^ - Pied Wagtail at Watchet.

^Above^ - Yellowhammers near Westonzoyland.

^Above^ - Female Blackbird having a bath in my garden.

^Above^ - Huge cargo ship coming into Bristol Docks and the Tugs coming out to guide it in!