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Monday, March 4, 2013

Road trip to Hampshire ...Brents & Sanderlings a plenty plus a couple of goons!

Another whistle stop road trip down to Hampshire to visit friends and squeeze in a bit of birding last week. We shouldn't be surprised I suppose but once again the weather was against us for all but a brief window of sunshine on Wednesday afternoon / eve, otherwise it was cold and decidedly gloomy! Great views of Red Kites coming into roost in the mist on the way down nr Newbury and we must have topped 20 in total whilst journeying ... they really have spread far and wide in the UK and always a treat to see.

Farlington Marshes is always a handy reserve to visit down there and although the morning was grey there were plenty of waders, ducks and geese about plus a couple of Song Thrushes and a Sparrowhawk.
Fly by Redshank
The geese were almost all Brents with maybe something like 300 on the water and many hundreds flying overhead ...... now I have to say that the light they were flying in was as gloomy as a graveyard on a wet Sunday afternoon, so most post production needed and not quite sure what I did with this but they look better than they ever did in the viewfinder!

This was a loner..... there's always one looking for a passport pic!

Talking of passport pics don't use these boys, you might get arrested for more than being in possession of  living head fur and a cockney rebelesque 70's pose!!

  The birds they must have pulled in their prime!
Ok, I'll get some stick for that but back to some birds with feathers as well as a pulse here's a few cracking Sanderling pics on Eastney Beach ..... and for a few hours the sun did shine!

Sanderlings are one of my favourite waders, nearly always doing something .... this little tussle over a juicy mollusc went on for several minutes

Until the victor flew away with the spoils!
Closely followed by a hungry gang .........
And then time for a rest .... didn't notice at the time but one of the Sanderlings has colour coded tags on its legs. I found a site on the net where you can report such tags and obtain a history of the birds movements ( so hopefully I'll get something back soon.
We had a single Mediterranean Gull fly past but sadly too quick for me to get the camera on it ..... Here's a few 'too far away but reasonable images' 
Oystercatcher feeding on a jetty at Eastney beach
Hardly in the 'reasonable' category but this was the only Sparrowhawk and only posting because Mark missed it ... here you go mate!

Mr & Mrs Common Teal out for a stroll
Later in the day we went back to Farlington Marshes and were rewarded by an impressive gull roost of 2000 plus Black Headed Gulls and many more waders including both Golden and Grey Plover, Dunlin, Knot and Black Tailed Godwit.
Then the sun went down and it was time to think about heading back to Yorkshire!

1 comment:

  1. Some cracking photos there Tim. Im fortunate enough to have been to Farlington Marshes last year when all the Brents were arriving, spectacular place! I've added a link to your blog on my blog now :)