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Monday, 27 June 2011

Norfolk this time

Things are getting real quiet at my local Cannock chase and with the recent visit to Suffolk I thought a trip to Norfolk would be in order. 

Yes you guessed it was another early start to pick up Ken and head East.  We arrived in good time and even had time for a bacon sandwich on the way. 

As we had arrived early we had a quick drive around Salthouse where there was lots of skylarks in the fields and managed to spot a Egret and Marsh Harrier. 

Leaving Salthouse we headed off to Pensthorpe where we were hoping to get some pictures of the bearded tits.  On arrival we had a good chat to the one warden and he gave us some pointers. 

We had a great day and saw a nice variety of birds.  The elderly people kept us amused whilst walking around as all they talked about was ken and his big one (lens). 

I am not going to list all the birds we saw and photographed but here are just a few.  More can be found on my flickr site although I think it will take a few weeks before I get them all on there. 

Minsmere Suffolk

I had a job with work in Suffolk during the week so after a 4 am start to miss the traffic and several hours on-site it gave me the excuse to call into Minsmere just down the road.  This was the first time i had visited the site and I was happy I did. 
During the walk around the reserve I managed to get some viewing of Spoonbills, Avocets, Gulls, Egret and a Flamingo of all things. 

I had spoken to my friend Pete the week before and he gave me some advise of where the Marsh Harriers could be seen from. 

As I was getting towards the end of my walk I saw the signs for the Bittern Hide and remembered this was the hide Pete suggested.  Within a few mins of being in the hide a Cuckoo landed on a old tree showing off.  It is a large crop but a good record shot for me. 

 It wasn't long before I saw my first Marsh Harrier and they just kept coming.  At times they really did come close.

Whilst watching the Marsh harriers a hobby and bitterns were also seen flying around. 

All in all a great place which I plan to visit again very soon.

Sunday, 19 June 2011


The treecreeper has been my boogy bird for some time now.  Earlier this spring I can across a nest and have been keeping my eye on it for some time.  This weekend the adults were feeding often and it seems it will be only a few days before the young will fledge, so I decided I best get some shots whilst I could. 

Typically they were located in the darkest possible spot and the weather didn't help either. 

Young Tawny Owl Surprise

I had a few hours free the one evening so I thought I would see if the Tawny Owl was showing.  After around 45 mins of looking in the tree tops for the Tawny I gave up hope.  As I got to the end of the path I looked back and noticed a owl sitting right at the top of an old oak tree, there it was I thought but something looked different.

Once I set up the tripod and got a view of it through the camera I realized it was a young Tawny Owl.  I got myself a few shots before trying to re-position myself to get a better view.  After approx. 2 mins I saw the young fly off in the corner of my eye,  oh no I had now lost it.  Another 15 mins of scanning the tree tops before I noticed what I first thought was the same young owl again.  After closer inspection I realized it actually wasn't but another tawny which looked younger again. 

This time the tawny was right at the top of the tree and well hidden behind branches and leaves.  Eventually I managed to position myself to get a few shots between all the branches.  After a while I got the chair out and sat behind a tree just watching him and it wasn't long before he was fast asleep.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Tawny Surprise

Early Saturday morning and the sun was out so it was another early morning start. We went out hoping to get some Green woodpeckers but after a few hours things seemed quiet. We were told about a sighting of a tawny owl so without a second thought off we went on the hunt for the tawny owl. It didn't take us long to find the location and the Tawny was showing well. The light was very tricky due to the canopy of the trees and the sun but I am happy with the outcome. A quick call to our friend Ian and within 5 mins he was making the 80 mile trip north to meet with Ken and myself. A slow start in the morning but it was well worth getting up for.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Long weekend

I had a few extra days off work last week so I though I would catch up with what was going on in my local patch Cannock chase. What a great place this is a this time of year. Also a bonus of a little owl whilst having a quick drive around the Peak district.