Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Tuesday 28th.June 2011

Firstly , many thanks to Dean/DDD , again , for identifying yesterday's two moths . The first was Oncocera semirubella , a name I recognised from last year once seen , but couldn't remember it , and the second , probably Crambus perlella . Cheers Dean .
Also left over from the same post , the photo of the recently emerged Chalkhill Blue , which I know I uploaded on the post , but then disappeared somewhere on Blogger , and still being unable to edit once published , could do nothing about it .
Today , and tomorrow being volunteer days up on the Greensand Ridge , I didn't expect to be posting till Thursday , but , having worked strimming/flailing paths all morning in very humid conditions , the flail , which I would add was not being used by me , broke down . The Warden headed back to the yard , and with lunchtime approaching , I finished off what I was doing and followed . By the time I got back , the flail was in many pieces , and the repairs needed new parts .
After lunch , the Warden headed to the engineers for the parts , and with nothing that I could do on my own , and with threatening skies , I was sent home . It just so happened , that I took my good camera and big lens with me today , just in case there was an opportunity during the day , or at the end of it , to pay another visit to the Buzzard's nest . I arrived at the site with thunder rumbling in the distance and the light deteriorating .There followed 40 minutes that I could only describe as ' you couldn't write it' .
I reached the nest , to find just one juvenile at home , and it looked like the one that didn't seem as far forward on the previous visit . It was sitting almost motionless , apart from when it backed to the edge of the nest and defecated . From the corner of my eye I spotted an adult fly in , but not to the nest . Neither adult or juvenile called . I never saw the adult again , but a movement some 3 mtrs. further up the nest tree , proved to be the second juvenile . It started climbing further up the tree , sometimes pulling itself up with it's beak . The one in the nest took no notice as the other climbed higher until it half climbed , half fluttered onto a branch some 5/6 mtrs above the nest . As the branch took the bird's weight , it snapped , and the juvenile was forced into it's maiden flight , crashing through branches , calling all the time , and was lost to sight some 30 mtrs away in dense woodland . I heard an adult calling and it seemed to head to where the juvenile had landed . The second juvenile carried on as before , but after a while , started to get agitated and stretching up out of the nest . I just knew that this one was about to leave the nest too , but only managed a blurred shot as it did so , it's body above the diagonal branch and it's legs trailing below the branch . After a bit of 'flopping about' , it started to get it's tree legs and started to look at what was about from it's higher perch , but always frustratingly the other side of the trunk . This one did not try the tree climbing , staying on the same branch for a few minutes . Then , with the first spots of rain , lightning flashing in the near distance and several heavy claps of thunder , it too took off into the unknown , a second after this shot was taken . If the flail hadn't broken down , the earliest I would have got to the nest would have been 4 o'clockish , the nest would have been empty , and the forty minutes watching both juveniles fledge from their nest would never have been witnessed .
ShySongbird , unfortunately my two copies of the Fitter , Fitter , Blamey guide , paperback and hardback , the second picked up at a boot sale for 10p in almost unused condition , are both the 'Great Britain and Northern Europe' versions , so I won't be calling 'drinks all round ' just yet .


Anonymous said...

Very envious of you being so close to a Buzzard nest, Greenie. Most of the breeding birds up here are on private land.

ShySongbird said...

That's a shame, I was hoping for a percentage ;)

Well, what a bit of luck you had there! Great captures and some very special memories for you Greenie. You really were in the right place at the right time, excellent, what a good job that flail broke :)

Warren Baker said...

It's all about timing Greenie, sometimes it all falls into place, you deserved that bit of magic :-)

Paul said...

As others have said Greenie, there are small windows in time, and sometimes things happen that allow us to look into these windows, and see some great sights. Much like your Buzzard nest/fledging, well done mate.

Mike H said...

Greenie like those before have said right place right time. Today it just happened to be yours to see and ours to enjoy reading about the experience. Nice photos.

Ken. said...

Hi Greenie.
Nice to see that the Buzzard chicks are still doing well.

Phil said...

Well done Greenie. Exciting stuff. At least we know that they fledged OK with some excellent shots to prove it.