Monday, 8 March 2010

Monday 8th.March 2010

Seeing as how the repaired lens will not be coming out with me on the next three days volunteering , the plan was to get out early in the sunshine , give the lens another good test , before the forecasted cloud moved in at lunchtime . Only problem with that was that the temperature was still about 0C as I set off , and it didn't move upwards by much whilst I was out . I headed for the North Downs , hoping for a raptor or two , as I have had them often before in the area . Trouble was , no one told them that I was coming to photograph them , so they didn't put in an appearance . Not surprising really as there was a keen easterly wind blowing , but out of that , it wasn't too bad . A couple of hours walking produced not a single photo opportunity and only interest found was a flyover of 6 Fieldfare , calling , and on the far side of a large field , a large flock of Gulls , which , on inspection turned out to be mainly Common , with just the odd Black-headed here and there . The cloud started to roll in about half an hour after my arrival , but by the time I got back to the car , the sky had almost completely filled in . At the car , I had put my gear in the back and was warming up with a coffee that Carol made to take with me . Out of the wind it was pleasant , then I noticed four Thrush sized birds , scampering about the field alongside . I watched them by eye as I drank my coffee , and as I did so , two of them came closer . The coffee finished , I reached back for the binoculars and watched the two come closer and closer . I rested the camera on the partly opened window and started shooting .
The first of the two birds turned out to be a nicely marked Mistle Thrush , and although realising I was there , didn't seem worried . The other bird , which turned out to be a Fieldfare , also clocked me , but even more surprisingly , wasn't worried either . The pair carried on feeding on good numbers of earthworms that they were finding in the field , but every now and again , making sure that they were not in danger . Eventually , they got as close as they were prepared to come , then about turned and headed off back down the field . I then got the binoculars on the other two who were feeding much further away , and they turned out to be a similar pairing . At least the lens got some work , eventually .
On the way home , at the far end of the bottom lane , the mini Rookery that supported two nests last year , has increased to three so far this year . In the horse field , the Rook's relation , the Carrion Crow , seemed more intent on feeding than nest building , although I saw one fly across the back garden before I went out with a stick in it's bill .
On the feeders at home , the Starlings are constantly attacking the fat balls , and as can be seen , the bill is turning yellow as it comes into breeding plumage . When the fats balls are free , the Blue Tits take their chance . They don't seem to be able to make up their minds as whether to use the nestbox on the side of the garage or the one on the end , as we see them in and out of both at frequent intervals .
And finally , although I've posted many shots of the species , I couldn't resist this oneon next door's Laburnum , in milky sunshine .
Tuesday and Wednesday will be up on the Greensand Ridge , will it be mild enough for my first Adder of the year ?


Warren Baker said...

It was a pretty cold day for March today greenie. You got a photo on the end though - very nice too.
As for your last question, - No it bloody well wont be!

Phil said...

Nice shots Greenie. Particularly like the Crow, I find it hard to make their eyes stand out against the dark plumage, but you did with this one.

ShySongbird said...

Lovely photos again Greenie and the one of the Parakeet is particularly nice.

Simon said...

Nice photos! Good luck with your Adder tomorrow!

Wilma said...

The markings on the mystle thrush are particularly nice, great shots there.

Anonymous said...

It`s supposed to be getting milder, but cloudier with it. Good luck with the Adders.

Ken Browne. said...

Hi Greenie.
Nice selection of photo's, I especially like the Parakeet, it does look cute.
As for the birs on the feeders, are your feeders near by, or did you do it on your computer?
Good luck with finding your first Viper.