Paul-A-king-Photography: Blog https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog en-us (C) Paul-A-king-Photography (Paul-A-king-Photography) Sun, 03 Oct 2021 01:27:00 GMT Sun, 03 Oct 2021 01:27:00 GMT https://paul-a-king-photography.com/img/s/v-12/u976718654-o357371908-50.jpg Paul-A-king-Photography: Blog https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog 120 96 Adventures are made, and this one was Hand crafted! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/9/adventures-are-made-and-this-one-was-excellent So another small adventure to Frampton Marsh, and coast at Freiston Shore RSPB reserve.

Another reserve visited over the weekend over in Lincolnshire, some great habitat and large numbers of waders at the time of the visit. So the Saturday coastal visit started at the brilliant Frampton Reserve, and as ever the wanted had done a bunk to somewhere else! But some nice stuff about Young Peregrine on carrion,  Good flock of Spoonbill, five yep 5 Short eared Owls and a cattle Egret also loads of young Yellow wags. Flocks of Linnit and Goldfinch

So the first early sighting was this Juvenile Peregrine Falcon, determined on preventing a Lesser black backed Gull from grabbing some carrion so it was grab and fly.

Juvenile-Peregrine-with-carrionJuvenile-Peregrine-with-carrion Things were a bit quiet except for Five yes five Short eared Owls over the marsh from the sea wall, Snipe flocks of Linnit and Goldfich, also lots of young Yellow wagtails, So it was decided to move to Freiston Shore RSOB reserve,, a brilliant place the Resevoir on the prison road was hopping with waders.
 

Juvenile-RuffJuvenile-Ruff

Juvenile Ruff Black-tailed-Godwits-groupBlack-tailed-Godwits-group

Black tailed Godwits from time at Blacktoft Sands White-tailed-Lapwing-Blacktoft-SandsWhite-tailed-Lapwing-Blacktoft-Sands

The White tailed Lapwing on holiday from Asia

 

White tailed Lapwing.

Spotted-Redshank-Blacktoft-sandsSpotted-Redshank-Blacktoft-sands

Two Spotted Redshank

 

There were obviously many photographs including this lovely Little Stint

Little-Stint-Frieston-CoastLittle-Stint-Frieston-Coast So there you go long drive early AM but the results were stunning

Check back for more adventures.

Cheers

Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/9/adventures-are-made-and-this-one-was-excellent Thu, 09 Sep 2021 19:33:25 GMT
So whats new, exciting stuff!! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/8/so-whats-new it has been a busy period since I last put the keys to work, but it has been an awesome period to say the least.

 so where to start, well after the lovely reserves in Somerset it was next to find the Birding bus in North Wales at Cemlyn bay, to do some work on the Terns feeding young, Sandwich, Artic, Common, and Roseate. I was chuffed with four tern species in one morning with the Roseat Tern taking up most of time, That evening it was up to South Stack for a hoped for dramatic Sunset! which did not happen, but always the morning sunrise! which also did not happen. It was miserable in the early morning Wind, mist and rain. A trio of Chough played on the wind calling to each othere as they passed overhead, such a cracking bird. So for breakfast as the day was considered, it did not look to promissing.then the news came through "Elegant Tern" reported in the tern colony at Cemlyn Bay, the Bird Bus was moving again  in an urgent manner. Roughly 25 minutes later and the normal struggle over the damn Shingle , All set up and ready to go ! "not been seen for over on hour!" was the greeting from otherss assembled on the shingle bank in front of the colony. it would seem the one of  the local peregines had flown over and the whole colony went up, at which point the Elegant tern was lost to  in the melee!

Elegant-Tern-Cemlyn-040721-2Elegant-Tern-Cemlyn-040721-2A stunning mega for the UK The Elegant tern at Cemlyn Bay North Wales.

Fast forward a shout went out "it's coming in over the rocks , so quick scan produced the required species for five in the place . fantstic a new one for the UK for me. The next few hours it was pose after pose for the best you could get in the moment, the wanted flight shots were never got.

This Barn owl was got a few weeks earlier and is only here because I like it a Lot LOL!

Barn Owl hanging-eight-!Barn Owl hanging-eight-!

The Barn Owl hanging eight!

 

Well whats to top that, needless to say the other Mega Rare species had to be the Albatross at RSPB Bempton Cliffs. A very similar result to the tern, it left the roost and not seen since, but then someone grabs it at roost with the Gannets, it was a long way of and as it tended to drop and cruise round the next bay I repositioned but space was in short supplied, "it's flying, and it dropped of the cliff and down to sea level where it glided out for some way before settling, only to get up fly out to sea. oh well try again in the morning.Well the morning was another no show so after another  long day of waiting for the hoped for return , no! it did not happen, oh another drive upto the cliffs at the RSPB Bempton Cliffs and more stinking fishy poop stink, oh well as this was the forth try for this South Atlantic species it was everything that could be crossed was, and then there it was bloody fantasti soaring around Staple Nuek (I know not spelt correctly MEH!)

Black-browed-Albatross-26-07-2021Black-browed-Albatross-26-07-2021 The Black browed Albatross at Bempton cliffs.

And as of today it is still around and drawing crowds of visitors to marvel at this amazing bird.

ALBATROSS-SCAPEALBATROSS-SCAPE A Seascape.

Not to forget the Kittiwakes and young

Juvenile-KittiwakeJuvenile-Kittiwake

Juvenile Kittiwake Kittiwake-Kittiwake-

And The Adult Kittiwake.

So what was next to be photographed if possible? well at the other end near

ly of the country a White rumped Sandpiper and Pectoral Sandpiper were reported, yep you guessed the Birding bus was cranked over, loaded with loads of kit and of to RSPB Minsmere. A good arrival time in the morning of the Saturday it was straight on the walk to the hide at East side of the scrape, now this bird is only 16-18 cm's big, and can hide behide everything and it did ,so day one not got!.

And of course what did not get packecd yep, the scope and at 300 mtrs ish it was a hard one to find until



Sunday early AM in the hide again and at distance it was a real bugger to find, and all day it proved elusive hiding from a goodly portion of the assembled people. Then as the sun was decsending in totally the wrong place for photo's there it was in the open so even a record shot would be a Brucy Bonus for the trip, and so it was.

 

White-rumped-Sandpiper--(16-18Cm)White-rumped-Sandpiper--(16-18Cm) The White rumped Sandpiper.

As a North American breeder it was even more a of a chuffed! got bird.

There thats me all up to date again so whats next how about a Pacific golden Plover or Long billed Dowitcher or even a nice Little Stint well pop back in about a few weeks and you will find out .

Cheers

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) White rumped Albatross Atlantic Bempton Cliffs east Fishypoo Fulmar Gannets Juvenile Kittiwake Kittiwakes Minsmere Pectoral RSPB Sandpiper scrape South https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/8/so-whats-new Wed, 11 Aug 2021 17:57:14 GMT
The first trip out for 2021 https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/6/the-first-trip-out-for-2021 It was the End of May by the time , Safety was aluded to by the second injection of the Vaccine. The location selected was down in Somerset, the local list of species was exciting . The journey was a bloody nightmare, stupidity had me on the road South ,on a Bank Holiday weekend, Stupidity. All went reasonably easy! The motorhome, or the birding Buss was behaving it self with no drama. But they , the weekenders, had all got on the road well early, and were all waiting in ambush! at the 20 mile to Bristol point what should have been two and a half hours of drive turned into five hours OMG!! the approach to destination produced some small drama as the Water Heater cover was smashed off of the the side of the vehicle, on a double  tight village centre with a strange person a fencer by all account known as a speed freak at the wheel. Anyway all repaired and there was no other damage was ready for the next adventure.

So we arrived safely and met up with Ken an old 'Brother in Arms' at West hay. on arrival Bitterns were booming and Cuckoo's shouting, the warblers, Sedge, Reed Cetti's and Garden along with Blackcaps produced a cacophany of songs amongst the reedbeds. The early AM was going to be a rare orchestral delight. 

HobbyHobby
 The number of Hobby was brilliant if most of time distant.

 But the Cuckoo's were in fine voice and in good numbers and in particular used one or two perches from which to sit and call as if his life depended on it. and females did come and call in turn. CuckooCuckoo

 The Male Cuckoo on his favorite calling perch. Cettis-WarblerCettis-Warbler

 And the final shot is of the diminutive bird the Cetti's Warbler, whose voice makes you jump as it shouts close by. GarganyGargany WhimbrelWhimbrel

 There was a flock of 37 - 40 Whimbrel on the fields lovely to see.

These are just a few of the species recorded over a very fine weekend.

And just an hour up the road we heard that a River Warbler had been found at RSPB Ham wall, damn it looks I shall be back on the Monday AM early.

 

Sunshine blue skys and good company ,good food and good beer, with some awsome birds, what else could you wish for?

Stay safe 

Paul King

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bittern Cetti's Cuckoo Egrets Hobby Otters Reed River Warbler Sedge Somerset Somerset Wildlife trust reserve Water Westhay Whimbrel https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/6/the-first-trip-out-for-2021 Tue, 15 Jun 2021 18:56:11 GMT
Remisance ! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/1/remisance So with very little getting out and about over 2020, Perhaps a little look back on what was going on back then? like if you do don't if not easy really. Enjoy

ShagShag Glossy-Ibis-Cors-Ddyga-2Glossy-Ibis-Cors-Ddyga-2 Glossy IbisGlossy Ibis Glossy-Ibis-5Glossy-Ibis-5 Eclipse-EiderEclipse-EiderCemlyn bay September Eclipse Eider Rose-coloured-StarlingRose-coloured-Starling RB-Shrike-fkightRB-Shrike-fkight red-backed-Shrike-5920red-backed-Shrike-5920 Water-RailWater-Rail Great-White-Egret--NestonGreat-White-Egret--Neston Water-rail-survivesWater-rail-survives Hobby Whixal Moss 2012Hobby Whixal Moss 2012 Common-Scoter-North-WalesCommon-Scoter-North-Wales Black-Guillemot-(Transtion)Black-Guillemot-(Transtion) Razorbill-changing-to-breeding-plumageRazorbill-changing-to-breeding-plumage Water-Rail-Parkgate-high-tideWater-Rail-Parkgate-high-tide Common-Scoter-flightCommon-Scoter-flight Rose Coloured StarlingRose Coloured Starlingmanual, auto ISO, +.3EV Ferruginous DuckFerruginous DuckThis beauty was happy floating around the boating lake in West Park Wolverhampton. Corn-Bunting-NonerlyCorn-Bunting-Nonerly Redpoll VP (2)Redpoll VP (2) Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla) Venus-Pool--15-02-2020Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla) Venus-Pool--15-02-2020 Redpoll-Venus-Pool-22-02-2020Redpoll-Venus-Pool-22-02-2020 Black-Redstart-Clive-arms-Bronfield-22-02-2020Black-Redstart-Clive-arms-Bronfield-22-02-2020 Stonechat-NonelyStonechat-Nonely Long-tailed Tit--vP-22-02-2020Long-tailed Tit--vP-22-02-2020 Juvenile Black RedstartJuvenile Black Redstart Seal and LunchSeal and Lunch Stonechat-today-NoneleyStonechat-today-Noneley Female-Stonechat--todayFemale-Stonechat--today Brambling-2020-VP-2Brambling-2020-VP-2 Brambling-VP--06022020Brambling-VP--06022020 The-prickely-perch-and-StonechatThe-prickely-perch-and-Stonechat Hen Harrier (M) Parkgate-21032019Hen Harrier (M) Parkgate-21032019 Short-eared Owl ParkgateShort-eared Owl Parkgate Caspian-Gull-PriorsleeCaspian-Gull-Priorslee Autumn-Colours-VP-2019Autumn-Colours-VP-2019 Ruff-Martin-MereRuff-Martin-Mere Whooper-Swan-head - CopyWhooper-Swan-head - Copy kESTREL-vpkESTREL-vp Ruff Martin meerRuff Martin meer Shorelark-Titterstone-cleeShorelark-Titterstone-clee Snow-Bunting-Colwyn-BaySnow-Bunting-Colwyn-Bay Firecrest-Conwy - CopyFirecrest-Conwy - Copy Purple Sandpiper-LEAVINGPurple Sandpiper-LEAVING Purple-Sandpiper.-rhos-on-sea - CopyPurple-Sandpiper.-rhos-on-sea - Copy Bearded-ReedlingBearded-Reedling Dowitcher-canvassed.Dowitcher-canvassed. Great-Skua-Bartley-ResGreat-Skua-Bartley-Res Lapland-Bunting-Long-mynd-3Lapland-Bunting-Long-mynd-3 Dunlin-take-offDunlin-take-off Curlew-Sandpiper-Dee-Estuary-02092019Curlew-Sandpiper-Dee-Estuary-02092019 Dunlin-and-friendDunlin-and-friend Spotted-Flycatcher-N-ShropsSpotted-Flycatcher-N-Shrops Spotted-Flycatcher-13072019Spotted-Flycatcher-13072019 Green SandpiperGreen Sandpiper FROGGY-WENT-A-COURTINGFROGGY-WENT-A-COURTING Wood-Sandpiper-Conwy-270719Wood-Sandpiper-Conwy-270719 puffin-pair-2puffin-pair-2 Bearded-ReedlingBearded-Reedling Golden-Plover-29-04-2019Golden-Plover-29-04-2019 Channel-Wagtail-07may-2019Channel-Wagtail-07may-2019 And-down-the-hatch-it-goes!!And-down-the-hatch-it-goes!! Short-eared-Owl-PG-210319Short-eared-Owl-PG-210319 Follow-me!Follow-me! Waxwing CockshuttWaxwing Cockshutt Slavonian-Grebe-Brickfields-RhylSlavonian-Grebe-Brickfields-Rhyl Smew-Holt-2Smew-Holt-2 Marsh-Harrier-grappleMarsh-Harrier-grapple Redshank-BrancasterRedshank-Brancaster Eurasian JayEurasian Jay Hawfinch MaleHawfinch Male Female-Scaup-West-KirbyFemale-Scaup-West-Kirby Brent-goose-WKBrent-goose-WK BtD-WING-FLAPBtD-WING-FLAP Wing-FlashWing-Flash Common-Crossbill-CRCommon-Crossbill-CR 1st-Winter-(female)-King-Eider-YN1st-Winter-(female)-King-Eider-YN Bee-Eaters-Notts-East-Leake-2017-aBee-Eaters-Notts-East-Leake-2017-a Turtle-DoveTurtle-Dove Turtle-Dove-TitchwellTurtle-Dove-Titchwell Calling-Grey-PartridgeCalling-Grey-Partridge MALE-REDSTART-EV-2017Redstart Male -EV-2017

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black Flycatcher migration Redstart Shropshire Warbler water White https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2021/1/remisance Mon, 11 Jan 2021 15:03:11 GMT
Discarded masks ?? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/12/discarded-masks  This must be a myth! as if you look at all the photographs of birders or as joe public daub them "Twitchers" then after the area is cleared there is no rubbish left behind?? this is best proven by the fact that none of the so called twitchers were wearing a single mask, therefore none were discarded.

so what can be gleaned from this obseration? Birders / Twitchers cannot catch the dreaded Covid 19, as they are immune.  Yes that is right, or at least the hoards of people chasin another rare bird to land on these shores and getting flushed/chased all over the place believe they are immune.

So one wonders ,how is it that so many attending people get ill and have to either go to hospital. hoping to come out again , or self isolate.

A strange and wonderful state of affairs indeed. 

Any way curbing the birding has a positive effect for many learning the songs or calls of the species and sorting out, in some cases, hundreds of mediore photo's laguishing on hard drives around the country., my self included a good cull will certainly, one might think, secure you some extrs space for the coming season?

These musings are just opinions and like bottoms  every one has one.

So mini rant over lets get to it.

There was no good travel to be had, and being considered as vulnerable, non was undertaken all was local and really quiet. stopped taking the camera out opting for the scope instead. so no picture to put up and I have avoided the discarded mask except in the famouse "Dog crap in a bag" trees.even those hung above the purposly placed bins!!  take from that what you will, and have your self a wonderful wasail
or whatever you want to call it.

Black-necked-Grebes-Ellesmere-22042019Black-necked-Grebes-Ellesmere-22042019 A corking pair at Ellesmere Shropshire

Bye for now.

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/12/discarded-masks Mon, 21 Dec 2020 15:58:48 GMT
The Blues and Streaks https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/8/the-blues-and-streaks  The transformation from a bag of fluid hanging on a grass stem twig or leaf, is a mind blowing concept of evolution, to say the least.

 Especially when you have the privilege, as that is what it is, to watch the emergence from this pupal stage of an insect into some of the most awe inspiring colourful and delicate insects you see on the wing as it fly's around, searching for its first feed and a mate to ensure the species continues. Brown-hairstreak---a-bitBrown-hairstreak---a-bit  The Brown Hairstreak feeding

purple-hairstreak-Prees-16-11-20purple-hairstreak-Prees-16-11-20

Green-HairstreakGreen-Hairstreak The Green Hairstreak


Sadly with the recent weatherhas precluded the search for one or two other streaks around the country, oh! and the covid 19 problem there has been little opportunity to go and search for them.

So onto the Blues.

Commonn-Blue-10Commonn-Blue-10

Common Blue male. Large-Blue-Dw-DSC9146Large-Blue-Dw-DSC9146

Large Blue, Strawberry Bank. Little BlueLittle Blue Little (Small) Blue ( bit tatty)

Common-Blue-head-down-2Common-Blue-head-down-2

Common Blue

B-Silver-studded-Blue-2B-Silver-studded-Blue-2

Silver Studded Blue

B-Silver-studded-PairB-Silver-studded-Pair

Silver Studded Blue

silverstud2silverstud2

Silver Studded Blue

Adonis-BlueAdonis-Blue

The Male Adonis Blue.

BATTLE-OF-THE-SEXESBATTLE-OF-THE-SEXES

Adonis Blue coupled.

Chalk-hill-blueChalk-hill-blue

Chalkhill Blue on Common Cornflag (Prestbury hill.
Blue-on-purpleBlue-on-purple C

Adonis Blue male on Devilsbit scabious Rough Bank

Silver-studded-Blue-zSilver-studded-Blue-z

Common blue on Smooth Hydrangia

 

Search and you shall find!! 

Well some days you do and some you don't,

The do not's far out weigh the do's but you keep searching

The list of wants is declining a bit slow but it can be achieved eventually.

Camberwll Beauty and Duke of Burgandy ? next year perhaps.

TTFN

Paul A King

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/8/the-blues-and-streaks Wed, 26 Aug 2020 10:50:16 GMT
14 of March moved to lockdown,,, 06 of June still here , https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/6/14-of-march-moved-to-lockdown-06-of-june-still-here                     hare-leapinghare-leaping

  You could be forgiven for thinking this was taken this spring, BUT! no, either way though, the look of "surprise" on his! face is brill, as she escapes his attentions for a short while before realisation of where she had gone.

People looking out for Hares performing out in the Shropshire fields have not been reporting to many at all when compared to prior years. which leads me to a conclusion that , COVID-19 has stopped observations or Shooting parties are having a whale of a time trying to exterminate the breeding population in Shropshire of many species!. When was the last time you saw Jugged Hare on a Menu or breast of pigeon ?  (Mmmm! with laver) or found for sale Pheasant, Qual, Grouse  and other so called game species. even wood pigeons plucked and fillited.

Well I for one one do not lament the passing of the poulterer ( if that's the right word for it) I remember as a Kid growing up in North Devon walking past the shop with all the bounty provided by the countryside around us , hanging in the open entrance strangley enough sustainably managed by the people them selves, As were the fish caught of off the coast. Before Factory Ships.

MY WHAT A DIFFERENT WORLD ,

The values of the folks of that and outlying villages were amazing, nothing was wasted ,got extra pass it on for a farthing or halfpenny, in a l;ot of cases free ,to help a family. Mind you never give details of its origin in case the local magistrate sent the bobbies around to feel your collar! But then as now I believe , before landowners started grubbing out hedge rows, killing trees that were stood in the way of "progress"!! the love of nature was and is  a deep seated  and deep rooted feeling  in people , as we are learning now , the benefits the soil, trees, and green spaces give us will help us all if we leave it to do it's amazing healing work.

Ramble over!!

 

Brown Hare_filteredBrown Hare_filtered

 Brown hare chasing a Raven

Brown-Hare-tastingBrown-Hare-tasting Is this one edible?

Vixen-4Vixen-4

Local Red Fox.

Otter-20150322-BNOtter-20150322-BN Dog Otter another local boy

 

 

Looking for the wildlife we all love.

So that is it, short, bit rambling and probably leaving you wandering what's he going on about?

Well we have been given an opportunity to commune with nature greater than any time since  WW2

don't squander it embrace it especially the children they can help to heal and protect the Natural World if we give them tools they need from us.

 

TTFN

Paul A king

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/6/14-of-march-moved-to-lockdown-06-of-june-still-here Sun, 07 Jun 2020 13:36:49 GMT
I just can't stop laughing ! latest predictive text "Corbyn 19" https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/3/i-just-cant-stop-laughing  Yesterday in a conversation on birding over the phone, the other person asked "so what do you think of this Avian Flu? having such a devastating impact on everyone"

 Sorry what do you mean? this Corvid 19 flu thing!" i  near wet myself , and am still chuckling!!!

 So how was the weekend, well it turned out just fine with some cracking species in front of thee lens. so without further  ado here goes.

 

 A Short-eared Owl downed by the wind at Parkgate and not to happy about it.

Great-White-Egret--NestonGreat-White-Egret--Neston

A smiley Great white Egret  at Parkgate in the High Tides and strong winds.

Common-Scoter-North-WalesCommon-Scoter-North-Wales

A Common Scoter at Benllech Anglesey

Common-Scoter-flightCommon-Scoter-flight

Common Scoter on a fly around (Benllech)

Black-Guillemot-(Transtion)Black-Guillemot-(Transtion)

 Black Guillemot on the change (1St winter) (Benllech)

Razorbill-changing-to-breeding-plumageRazorbill-changing-to-breeding-plumage

A Razorbill also changing to Summer plumage. (Benllech)

Water-Rail-Parkgate-high-tideWater-Rail-Parkgate-high-tide

Water Rail running for the hills. (Parkgate)

Water-rail-survivesWater-rail-survives

This one waited for the right moment to make dash for it. (Parkgate)

A little tale on this one,, It was grabbed by a crow as it ran for the safety of the wall at the old bath house car park, So after some struggling the crow dropped it and it landed on the forward edge of the incoming tide, where it stayed either in shock or being a clever Water rail! . So as the water pushed it closer the Crow was hanging around, but eventually gave up the rail waited about an hour and suddenly got up and legged it for the shore , nice to see a few getting away..

There you are nice easy one today, Anglesey again proved worth the time getting there and the sun shone all day, so a brill day along the coast. A brucey bonus was the 5 Chough sat on the ridge tiles of the house next to the RSPB car park well good

Hope to be allowed out to do some more proper birding shortly as on lockdown at the moment Bugger!  missing so much, still with all those people spreading their germs about reckon it is the best place to be. 

So we shall see what happens next.

Cheers

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Beach bird Black Common Eared Guillemot Juvenile Owl Rail Razorbill Scoter Sea Short Water https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/3/i-just-cant-stop-laughing Wed, 18 Mar 2020 18:21:15 GMT
WHERE DOES TIME FLY TO ? .As it sure does fugit! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/3/where-does-time-fly-too It's February and time is rushing along. Thank goodness nature knows exactly what's going on The length of day really gets the sap rising and it can be seen in many species as they begin nest building , courting and mating and with young of many birds already fledging young. Except for trees but the display of Black thorn along the roads is stunning.

I also feel more alive as the rain dries up, for a good while we hope, well at least the heavy stuff. The flooding has been devastating for many including wildlife, which can thankfully move elsewhere. But we shall continue to build on traditional flood plains and pay a fortune to insure our chattels. We are a dumb race, no taking note of history!!

So with me up and more or less out of my winter plumage, for now a least, it is back to the business of getting out and about for those shots I am always after.

 

So wot ya got Paul?

I'm glad you asked me that! so here are a few of the recent gots from around the area ,and further afield..

Female-Stonechat--todayFemale-Stonechat--today

 Female Stonechat Noneley Shropshire.

Ferruginous DuckFerruginous DuckThis beauty was happy floating around the boating lake in West Park Wolverhampton.

Ferruginous Duck West lake Wolverhampton.

Snow-buntingSnow-buntingTaken at Red wharf bay Anglesey.

Snow Bunting Red Wharf Bay Anglesey.

Corn-Bunting-NonerlyCorn-Bunting-Nonerly

Corn Bunting Noneley Shropshire.

Redpoll VP (2)Redpoll VP (2)

Lesser Redpoll Shropshire .

Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla) Venus-Pool--15-02-2020Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla) Venus-Pool--15-02-2020

Brambling Venus Pool Shropshire.

  Redpoll-Venus-Pool-22-02-2020Redpoll-Venus-Pool-22-02-2020

So cute it deserved another slot !

Stonechat-NonelyStonechat-Nonely

Partner of the female heading the page.

Long-tailed Tit--vP-22-02-2020Long-tailed Tit--vP-22-02-2020

Continuing with the cuteness theme, Long Tailed Tit .

Juvenile Black RedstartJuvenile Black Redstart

And a very cute Female Black Redstart Shropshire.

Poser or what?

  Seal and LunchSeal and Lunch

Ok not so cute but got supper sorted.

Well there are some of the cutest birds about in the county, more yet to get in front of the lens but that and they can wait til the next time.

Mind how you go , floods and viruses  are dangerous

See you again 

Paul.

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Flycatcher grebes migration pied Shropshire Spoonbill Spotted Spring Treecreeper Warbler water Wood https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2020/3/where-does-time-fly-too Tue, 03 Mar 2020 20:26:59 GMT
How long before we all start quacking? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/12/how-long-before-we-all-start-quacking Heard a voice the other night saying "Noah " so I says"ay op wots goin on?" so this voice says "build me an ark" "what and cut down all them trees?"

" oh it's ok there is plenty along the HS2 line"  A little topical perhaps but true non the less, The destruction of the planet continues unabated!!!

Ok my little rant out of the way now the important bit and bobs.

It is December the 20th 2019 ONLY 4 MORE SLEEPS ,i WONDER IF THERE BE ANYTHING IN THE STOCKINGS THIS YEAR ? Looking forward to the xmas McDonalds again!!

so a little bit of what's been in front of the lens , other than rain drops.

Well for starters how's about this beauty up at Colwyn bay tother week. So confiding it was unreal posing like a model out of Vogue, well you know what I mean. At times just to close , but nice to watch all the same, until it stormed of in a huff for a drink.

Snow-Bunting-Colwyn-BaySnow-Bunting-Colwyn-Bay

Snow Bunting Colwyn bay

Snow-Bunting-Colwyn-Bay.Snow-Bunting-Colwyn-Bay.

Searching for seeds

And off in a Huff.

A Purple Sandpiper sequence Purple-Sandpiper.-rhos-on-sea - CopyPurple-Sandpiper.-rhos-on-sea - Copy Purple-sandpiper-on-rock - CopyPurple-sandpiper-on-rock - Copy Purple Sandpiper-LEAVINGPurple Sandpiper-LEAVING

Until it also buggered off.

Ruff Martin meerRuff Martin meer


 

The weather was again Ruff !

Always a wonderful sight to watch families of Whoopers  on the scrap.

And back in Shropshire , The local Kestrel at the Venus pool reserve showed really nicely.
 

And lastly a real crappy shot of one of the Firecrests at RSPB Colwyn.

Firecrest-Conwy - CopyFirecrest-Conwy - Copy Good griefness them buggers move fastm next time perhaps.

And it'd still raining, looking out the window at the feeders even the tempting food is not bringing the birds out, even watched 6 House Sparrow dive into the single nest box close by. 

So there you go another load of whats been in front of the lens over the last month, not a lot but not worth getting soaked unless it a megga is it.  Or is it?

 

so by for now, and  have your self a bostin Christmas, 

Paul (Bumpy Grastard.)

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Flycatcher grebes migration pied Shropshire Spoonbill Spotted Spring Treecreeper Warbler water Wood https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/12/how-long-before-we-all-start-quacking Fri, 20 Dec 2019 12:32:17 GMT
Vis Mig is very much alive as we move into some heavy bird movement. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/10/vis-mig-is-very-much-alive-as-we-move-into-some-heavy-bird-movement So September came and went and it presented us all with some really achievable results . The far reaches of the country were the places to be in the North Shetland and its associated islands held some very magnetic species as we progressed in to October.

And at the other end The Scilly isles had more more equally drawing birds for the crowds, and the rarities on both sets of Islands were stunning. For me however with builders ripping the place apart, ish! It was to be local stuff or the west and or East coast that was the draw, and with around 120 Grey Phalaropes in country surely must be able to hook up with one soon??

Juvenile Med Gull

Long billed Dowitcher

Young Sandwich Tern

Long billed Dowitcher

 

Wigeon on the wing.

Great White Egret

Could not resist the Dowitcher

Yep another short blurb for the begining of the month but places to go and things to photograph I hope so see you very soon

Cheers

Paul.

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black Flycatcher migration Redstart Shropshire water White https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/10/vis-mig-is-very-much-alive-as-we-move-into-some-heavy-bird-movement Thu, 10 Oct 2019 19:44:03 GMT
It's Big ! How do I find a little bird on here? STOP PRESS ANOTHER BUNTING FOUND IN SHROPSHIRE https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/9/its-big-how-do-i-find-a-little-bird-on-here A daunting prospect when your not sure just where to be looking, AH! the limestone pavement? what the Dickens is that and where is it , even better go to the cairn. Well with rocks jutting out all over the place recognising  a cairn was easy!!!. But thank goodness for Birders gathering ish! the location was found and after a wee bit of meandering One of the two present was found and , well it was a bit flighty. 

But patience and perseverance paid off in the end ..

The Lapland Bunting on the Great Orme.

Lapland bunting 2019 Long myndLapland bunting 2019 Long mynd A first showing in the morning.

Lapland-Bunting-08092019Lapland-Bunting-08092019 A call from another Lapland bunting peaked its interest?

A brief tale from the Orme and when it was not in view the vista from the top was stunning

A very nice morning indeed..

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Well not to be outdone, Shropshire had it's own Lapland Bunting just a week later on the Long Mynd

Lapland-Bunting-Long-mynd-3Lapland-Bunting-Long-mynd-3

 

and doing much the same thing, feed a bit, get disturbed by either loose dog, Mountain bikers, walkers and horse riders. But after a little fly around it was soon back on the track going crazy for the smallest seeds , and so confiding it came past at just 1 foot away, incredible and as only the second recorded in the county, I think, it was fantastic to watch and photograph.

Lapland-Bunting-Long-mynd.-2Lapland-Bunting-Long-mynd.-2
 

So with a Year tick last weekend and a county rarity this week can't wait for what is for the coming week

who knows what will turn up..

Cheers

Paul.

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bunting Conwy feeding Great Lapland Bunting Long mynd North Wales Orme poser seeds Shropshire Visitor https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/9/its-big-how-do-i-find-a-little-bird-on-here Mon, 09 Sep 2019 12:13:52 GMT
It is officially Autumn, bring on the colours, YAY! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/9/it-is-officially-autumn-bring-on-the-colours-yay So that's it for another however many months. Summer is over and with it the Summer Holibobs , and?  so what? well the morning line of Mums taxi's are taking up all the parking spaces so the little darlings don't have to walk to school and perhaps get wet! My Mother took me to school once, and when she realised they would send me back at the end of the day she gave up!!! she pinned a brown luggage label to my lapel with school address on it and pushed me out the back door.

There have been amazing birds turning up at many great places from Shetland to cornwall  and the birding populace has moved like a tidal wave to ensure it is listed for the year, for many it will entail driving all night in the hope of the target still being there in the am. So did I manage to obtain photographs of my targets during August? well we shall see...

Curlew-Sandpiper-Dee-Estuary-02092019Curlew-Sandpiper-Dee-Estuary-02092019

A Curlew Sandpiper feeding on the beach at Hoylake.

Dunlin-and-friendDunlin-and-friend

A Green sandpiper and Dunlin gave each other a fright .

Or Green Sandpiper puts wind up Dunlin !!!

Dunlin-take-offDunlin-take-off

The Dunlin takes um-bridge to something and goes off.

Gull billed Tern Dee estuaryGull billed Tern Dee estuary

The Thurstaston Gull billed Tern, 

Hope you liked this installment and you return again

Cheers

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Billed Curlew Dunlin Green Sandpiper Gull Hoylake Kingsgap Miggration Sandpiper Tern water https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/9/it-is-officially-autumn-bring-on-the-colours-yay Wed, 04 Sep 2019 14:59:40 GMT
OK! who stole June??? July and August!!! ? or did I just hibernate to long? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/8/ok-who-stole-june  Well June did not happen really it was just an extra long May, with continual rain wind and thoroughly unpleasant days. But migration continues after a fashion as pairing was going on and rapid at that , the incessant rain seems to have washed a lot of insects from the canopy and lots of the higher hunters were keeping well low as they searched for the protein packed packages.

But there was good forecasts for the end of the month and it arrived, no cussing the weather people this time , temperatures got up and stayed for a whole two days, amazed! Sunshine equals coast for some lovely Sandwich Terns.

Tumble-Dry!Tumble-Dry!
 After a good afternoon fishing it takes a few extreme spins to remove the salt water in the fresh lagoon.

Spotted Flycatcher searching for moreSpotted Flycatcher searching for more A North Shropshire Spotted Flycatcher searching for more bugs for the brood.

 

FROGGY-WENT-A-COURTINGFROGGY-WENT-A-COURTING This young Grey Heron looks a bit perplexed as to just what to do next. I doubt the Frog was best pleased to be taken by the hand for an enforced dunking.

Wood-Sandpiper-Conwy-270719Wood-Sandpiper-Conwy-270719 And still on the North Wales coast this cracking juvenile Wood sandpiper  has a definite destination in mind. The flies always look meatier on the other side!!

Wood-Sandpiper-2-conwy-270719Wood-Sandpiper-2-conwy-270719 Now had this Green Sandpiper kept quiet it might have got away with out being seen.

Little-Owl-Cemlyn-082019Little-Owl-Cemlyn-082019 And the latest trip along the coast presented the grumpy Little owl.

They never look pleased at being disturbed from there slumber.

Well there you are few tidbits to whizz through whilst I try and find some further interesting species to get in the viewfinder, the Glossy Ibis in North Devon did a brilliant fly by, just directly into the sun Grrrrr!

SNOOTYSNOOTY

So I am off to goodness where next , I shall let you know.

Cheers Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Anglesey Birds Cemlyn coast Conwy Courting eyes Flies Frog Little Migration Owl Sandpipers Sarnies Wales https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/8/ok-who-stole-june Mon, 19 Aug 2019 16:01:07 GMT
Mental or what??? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/6/mental-or-what It is April already, and things are popping up all over the place as migration is fully on the go, I have been chasing targets for the lens all over the place, it's the same every year around the local haunts and further afield to some really lovely places indeed. I suppose I have many favourites but I think Anglesey must count as the best for me. Stunning scenery interesting birds and wildlife and some lovely little cafe's oh! and a McDonalds. with its resident Hooded Crows. So what was I looking for on this trip you might wonder? Well the place never lets you down and this trip even exceeded it self , so whats all the fuss? well here you go with a few of the captures.

Twite-Cemlyn-bayTwite-Cemlyn-bayI never even thought of this one being there.

Twite

I was very pleased to see the mixed flock of around 12 birds, in the fields above Cemlyn bay

Not to many days later it was another visit to the hills of north Wales this time however it was a repeat visit to Llyn Brenig for some lovely close ups of Siskin and Lesser Redpoll.

Siskin-14-04-19Siskin-14-04-19 The brilliant male Siskin

Lesser-Redpoll-15-04-19Lesser-Redpoll-15-04-19 And the aforementioned Lesser Redpoll

Things were a bit quieter after these but stuff started to arrive slowly with the usual weather patterns causing a lot of concern for migration, but some stuff was worth the wait.

Pied-Flycatcher-200419Pied-Flycatcher-200419 The pied Flycatchers were in and getting down to it rapidly, this male had a mate already, probably more than on the way they go at it furnishing a nest box with all sorts of grasses and mosses, and here she is.

Female-Pied-Flycatcher-12052019Female-Pied-Flycatcher-12052019 She actually hung around a bit to close at times to say the least.

it was a free for all on nesting sites and here is one of the Treecreepers pasing nesting material to the female behind the bark.

treecreeper-2treecreeper-2

they were so busy during those early days of Spring and there was a good spell of weather

The next summer visitor to appear was this beautiful Wood Warbler, it's call and song are nowadays eluding me as hearing loss is starting to cause a problem or two!! especially with species like the goldcrest.

Another-of-ouir-British-colourful-birds,-The-Goldcest.Another-of-ouir-British-colourful-birds,-The-Goldcest. it's off putting when you can see the beak working but no sound ! it sure makes you concentrate, ok if it's really quiet and that doesn't happen that often in spring. But beauty takes on some stunning appearances, as did these pair of Black necked Grebes on the lake at Ellesmere, and what a cute couple they make posing really well most days.

Black-necked-Grebes-Ellesmere-22042019Black-necked-Grebes-Ellesmere-22042019 Black-necked Grebes.

Bearded-ReedlingBearded-Reedling A quick trip down to suffolk for a few of the rarities that were arriving produced some stunning images, as the above demonstrates 

The Bearded Reedling (or Tit as it was)

Stone-Curlew-05-may-2019Stone-Curlew-05-may-2019 And whilst in that neck of the woods it would have been rude not to have taken time out to view the Stone Curlews at Weeting  heath sadly a long way of and severe heat haze.

Not far away a group of Eurasian Spoonbills had taken up temporary residence at Blakeney. Spoonbill-with-flag-and-rings.Spoonbill-with-flag-and-rings.

This particular individual was Flagged, from where i am not sure, but so nice to see then feeding a flying around.

purple-heron.-Burnham-Ovarypurple-heron.-Burnham-Ovary

It was absolutely peeing down on the day this PURPLE heron was found at Burnham Overy Strait,

Stalking the fields for anything it could get in it's beak.

And so it was back to the county of Shropshire for a few more amazing birds,(for a Change)

Channel-Wagtail-07may-2019Channel-Wagtail-07may-2019 The Channel Wagtail, found on the floods around Nonely was a real draw for the local birders after a nice shot, which stayed in the area for ages and as of writing may still be there. Also on the floods were Corn Buntings, Yellow Wagtails and a Little Stint even put in an appearance .

So that brings me a bit closer to today but there are more to run through so see you again soon

Cheers

Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Flycatcher grebes migration pied Shropshire Spoonbill Spotted Spring Treecreeper Warbler water Wood https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/6/mental-or-what Thu, 20 Jun 2019 15:58:50 GMT
The aftermath of the holidays! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/1/the-aftermath-of-the-holidays  Winter can induce many feelings in the aftermath of the festivities of Xmas (can't spell Christmas !) and of course who can forget or rather remember the New Year, with resolutions made and broken the very next day. The year started with a bang on the birding front with many nice ones to search for and get the year list under way. The first target after an abysmal new years day count was the pair of fully moulted Smew at the fishing lake at Holt Church a gorgeous pair although only one was available on the visit day. The next venue was to be the Arrow Valley Country Park for the long staying Black-throated Diver and what a cracker it was a might elusive at times, and as a Brucey Bonus a nice Pink-footed Goose arrival with a bunch of Greylag geese.

The next one to be added was a couple of Waxwings close to Shrewsbury, a long awaited species in the winter months but not a guaranteed bird at all , so their discovery prompted a few birders to go for them.

Smew-Holt-2Smew-Holt-2

Black-throated DiverBlack-throated DiverAt the Arrow Valley Country park

Pink-footed-Goose-Arrow-Valley-country-parkPink-footed-Goose-Arrow-Valley-country-park   Waxwing CockshuttWaxwing Cockshutt

Last but not least Redpoll on Alder

So there you go Not a bad haul for the first couple of weeks of 2019 and still Cattle Egret if it hangs around and the Great-grey Shrike

we live in exciting times !!!

Enjoy

Paul.


 


 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Alder Black Diver Footed Goose Pink Redpoll Smew Throated water Waxwing White https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2019/1/the-aftermath-of-the-holidays Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:12:11 GMT
Nomadic Birding ! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/10/nomadic-birding Nomadic birding? what the dickens is that when it's at home ? damned expensive that is for sure, and with the virtually immediate reporting of a new species for the list, is an attractive pull for many birders chasing their numbers and species. Which ever system is used be it pager, text or email the information is disseminated so quick, it can be exciting when which ever media suddenly beeps or springs into life indicating a species on a particular filter set has been reported.

The latest to activate the system is the report of a Nutcracker up north in a garden, no more guessing description, location, route, address, co-ordinates and other important pieces of information. For many it will be an early morning or even overnight scramble to reach the target location for first light in the hope that the target has remained in the locality. Then it's just a case of finding the Bird if at all, but hardened individuals will stick to it until something else draws them onward.

For me it all depends on how far it is to drive and if I can be bothered to mix it up with those that arrive in droves, or just leave it and work the local areas. Hmmm! some times a difficult decision indeed especially if it needs to go on the list , particularly if it it's a "Lifer!!"

I shall show some of the more local items  first, so here you go.

 

Great White Egret Colemere Shropshire

Juv-Black-tern-ColemereJuv-Black-tern-Colemere

Juvenile Black Tern Colemere.

 

Female-Eider-New-BrightonFemale-Eider-New-Brighton

Female King Eider New Brighton

Barn-Owl-ColemereBarn-Owl-Colemere

Barn Owl hunting at Colemere.

 

Spotted-crake-BM-15092018-2Spotted-crake-BM-15092018-2

Spotted Crake Burton mere.

So that's a few of the more local, within 1.5 hours drive from home. Finally the long awaited week off arrived, and Norfolk was the point of interest with many migrants being reported as arriving.  Such as Barred Warbler, Yellow Browed Warbler, Ortolan Bunting, Red Breasted Flycatcher just to mention a few, and did I

manage to hook up with any ? not on your nelly buggers.

So a selection from the few days away for your delectation :

Marsh-Harrier-grappleMarsh-Harrier-grapple

Marsh Harrier grapple

Snowbunting-trial-and-errorSnowbunting-trial-and-error

Snow Bunting (Hmm edible?)

Snowbunting-tasterSnowbunting-taster

Snow Bunting ( Damn it no! )

oh!-you-saw-thatoh!-you-saw-that

Snow Bunting (Oh you saw that )

Egret-ball-BrancasterEgret-ball-Brancaster

Little Egret (Bit chilly)

Wheatear-Eyefield-CleyWheatear-Eyefield-Cley

Wheatear at top of I field Cley

Brent-Goose-SnettishamBrent-Goose-Snettisham

Brent Goose a bit soggy.

Redshank in evening light

Redshank-BrancasterRedshank-Brancaster

Juvenile Redshank early morning

Grey-Seal-CleyGrey-Seal-Cley

Atlantic Grey Seal Titchwell

Grey-Seal-TitchwellGrey-Seal-Titchwell

Grey Seal

Grey-seal-Titchwell-chanelGrey-seal-Titchwell-chanel

Grey Seal

.Sanderling at lunch

Sanderling Apres Feed

Jack-Snipe-TitchwellJack-Snipe-Titchwell

Jack Snipe

Well nothing exceptional , but the Jack Snipe was a pleasant surprise in the sunshine, The high tides at Snettisham were very nice to watch as the waders proceeded to flock in to the pool at the Wader watch location but the return to feed was excellent, just over the heads of the onlookers, the patterns and movements were spectacular and will improve as we move into the winter. 

 

 

So there you go, if you do nothing else go and watch the spectacle at Snettisham.

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Snow bounting Sanderling Eider Black Brent D500 Gannet Goose" Jack Snipe migration nikon Telescope Tripod water White https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/10/nomadic-birding Tue, 23 Oct 2018 17:20:56 GMT
A little catch up from March til now!!! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/8/a-little-catch-up-since-mach I can't believe it has been so long since I was in a position to upload some of the latest for the last 4 months. With visits to Frampton (Lincs) ,North Devon, Anglesey and reserves in Gloucestershire it has been none stop and a wedding in the mix it has been a tad crazy, to say the least .So where to start? I know! the beginning could be a go!, so ok 

This is most likely just going to be a selection of Photographs as pinning to a location could the old grey matter a little but will edit as I remember , LOL! like that will happen ;).

A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here A right mix of locations here

Shropshire, Bridges, Chelmarsh and South Stack Anglesey

 

Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long. Emerald-Damselfly-TBSuch colour and only circa 30mm long.

Some real corkers, The Brown Argus from Daneway and Strawberry Bank, Emerald Damselfly and Black Dragonfly The Bog Shropshire, Chalk Hill Blue,

and the Fox Moth were at Prestbury Hill Gloucester.  The High brown Fritillary was in North Devon

Arriving early on the hills overlooking Cheltenham the mist was as thick as a good old thick FOG! but by 11:00 the sun poked its happy face out and there they were butterflies everywhere and happy face for me too as Dawn had found the wanted Chalkhill Blue fantastic.

There will be more as I re-collect my info from the records thank goodness for Bird Journal which actually does everything fantastic pocket brain indeed.

So See you a bit later on

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black dragonfly Brown argus Chalkhill Blue Emerald Damselfly Frampton Marsh Lincolnshire Gloucestershire High-brown Fritilary North Devon Shropshire https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/8/a-little-catch-up-since-mach Wed, 08 Aug 2018 16:38:36 GMT
West Kirby's Greater Scaup and Others. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/3/west-kirbys-greater-scaup-and-others The tide was so far out it was difficult to see any water and the wind was more than a  tad cold, but the Marina lake looked to be void of wildlife. Then a good size mini flock of Brent Geese hove into view, which is always very nice to catch up with A curlew, Redshank and Turnstone dropped onto one of the jetty's, there seemed to be very little else , a few gulls and some Mallard. But after about five minutes of scanning, target acquired, up they popped, seems like I missed them on previous scans as they were under the water. WOW! 7 Greater Scaup a mixed bunch but fantastic to have them. There were no Red-breasted Mergansers here today but I'll take the Scaup and Brent.

 I settled down by the car, as I charged my batteries, having forgotten to do so the previous evening, it was evident that these guys were not phased by the public walking dogs and runners going around the top of the retaining wall, wow! so confiding, even to the extent of a black Lab retrieving a ball from mere feet away from them. The activity started moving the group along the lake in the direction of the building to the North of the lake, I kept an eye on this as the waters edge was very easy to access at that point, whilst I took more notice of the Geese. They and the Scaup were moving along the North shore so , position changed to await their arrival, and arrive they did in fact so close I had to back up a bit to ensure no chopped of tails etc.

For the Brent Geese it was the grass they were after whilst similar for the Scaup, they were also surfacing with small crustaceans. These Duck were so confiding it was  great to get the close up shots, when they appear a my local lakes they were always so distant and flighty this was a real bonus day.

, Female-Scaup-West-KirbyFemale-Scaup-West-Kirby Female Greater Scaup

Greater-Scaup-West-KirbyGreater-Scaup-West-Kirby Male Greater Scaup

  Brent-Goose-West-KirbyBrent-Goose-West-Kirby

Brent Goose

Brent-goose-WKBrent-goose-WK Brent Goose one of 17

It was now the turn of Burton Mere for a mooch about and a very nice Mooch it was. The addition of the Great white Egret, Merlin and Avocets were a welcome addition to the chase, for another 200+ year, no Marsh harriers were seen.

Mission accomplished it was back to the Shire.

As many will know the influx of Hawfinch's has been unprecedented with many people scouring church yards for the large and colourful seed eaters.

and they were not disappointed with birds being found in many churchyards around the county with close on 70 in one flock.

So it was out and go for some photographs of, what is normally for the county a difficult bird to get, I was not to be disappointed.

Hawfinch and seedsHawfinch and seeds

Male Hawfinch at the Fitz Church feeding on Yew seeds.

 

Such colourful birds and that beak is massive.

Hawfinch-Fitz-3Hawfinch-Fitz-3 Hawfinch-FitzHawfinch-Fitz

As you can probably guess I filled my boots with these as Like I said not always so easy to find in the county and so near, it was amazing to be able to observe them at such close range.

So that's it for another Blog rambling by yours truly.

Hope to see you at the next Blog take it easy and good birding.

Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) boating Female Lake Low Male Mergansers Scaup tide waders west Kirby https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/3/west-kirbys-greater-scaup-and-others Wed, 21 Mar 2018 03:14:52 GMT
Snuggled up as the first Snow storm moves across the Taw Estuary https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/3/snuggled-up-as-the-first-snow-storm-moves-across-the-taw-estuary At the end of the day the estuary took on a surreal look as the weak winter sun sank spreading some wonderful light over the low water of the Taw. Esturine-SundownEsturine-Sundown

 

The idea of the day was to find and photograph the Spoonbills that kept getting reported around the marshes and salting's but, could I link up with them ? no! it was yesterday at so and so, or earlier at the other side!!! Well after observing a Waterrail for a while I got news that the Spoonbills had just flown into the RSPB reserve at Islay marsh, it was the end of the useable light, but I hoofed it down the Tarka trail for an opportunity to view and possibly get a few shots.

 

Spoonbill-2Spoonbill-2

 

spoonbillspoonbill

Whilst the rest (3) snuggled down against the wind and snow moving across the countryside, this one had a bit of a preen and move about to get the right position for a warmer snooze. Not a brilliant shot, but I was happy considering the conditions prevailing.

A few days earlier I was out on the Braunton Marsh hoping to catch sight of the Taig Bean Goose, and I was lucky to find it with some Mute swans , just a long way of, but the scene that unfolded in front of me was awesome.

The Mute Swans and the Bean Goose all moved to their right whilst concentrating on what ever was going on to their left. The Peregrine paused in the consumption of the Lapwing it had taken shortly before this shot, issued couple of screeches and the movement stopped. 

This was what had them interested. A fine looking Fox as he casually strolled through the field.

fox-Headfox-Head Fox-SquintingFox-Squinting   All in all a good couple of days down on the Marsh and Estuary with some cool birds, the Glossy Ibis still managed to elude me, whilst again it was reported as being on the Pill at Fremington

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) bean braunton colours goose low marsh peregrine snow spoonbill sunset taw estuary water wind https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/3/snuggled-up-as-the-first-snow-storm-moves-across-the-taw-estuary Mon, 05 Mar 2018 02:49:18 GMT
Fantastic Birds in less than fantastic weather. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/1/fantastic-birds-in-less-than-fantastic-weather So far, this winter has been particularly wet and windy, and though the temperatures are going to drop and there's the remote possibility of white stuff on the hills, we still go out and search for those species that are either visiting or have moved to lower locations.

A trip to Slimbridge proved really good for the numbers game with some fine species about, some pictures to follow.

Pochard-landingPochard-landing Pochard

For the odd period or two the light improved somewhat, but unfortunately did not last.

Little-stint-slimbridgeLittle-stint-slimbridge Little Stint.

Never one to venture too close, a bit of a long distance shot unfortunately.

Spotted RedshankSpotted Redshank Awful shot of a Spotted Redshank a long way off.

 

ANGLESEY

Never disappointed with a trip to the Holy Island today, it was the attraction of the reported Black throated Diver on Llyn llygeirion

and as it turned out, an easy location to find, tucked away not far from the Power station, certainly worth keeping a watch on this one on any trip to the island

So on to the (too many photo's) selection of the days capture.

Black-throated DiverBlack-throated Diver Black-throated-Diver-2Black-throated-Diver-2 Black-throated-Diver-1Black-throated-Diver-1 It took a number of hours before it came close enough for some nice shots, blimmin shame the light was so poor, grey water, grey Sky and a grey ish Diver-meh!

But a nice lifer for the UK, in fact my first white billed diver, so I am chuffed. Missed the in flight moment as it transferred water, but plenty of preening activity.

What else did I find? Well, Holyhead Marina: 2 Great northern Divers, a Shag, Juvenile Razorbill, Turnstone and Red Breasted Merganser, plus the normal, shame no Black Guillimot seen, just have to go back me thinks.

Just a reminder to those that go for the Black Grouse,,, stay in your car for goodness sake, and as it is schedule 1 you can avoid prosecution.

So enjoy the birds

Cheers for a bit

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) anglesey bewicks black-throated diver european white fronted goose holyhead llyn llygeirion marina pochard slimbridge https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/1/fantastic-birds-in-less-than-fantastic-weather Tue, 30 Jan 2018 19:24:00 GMT
Christmas is coming and the birds are getting scarce!!! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/1/chritmas-is-coming-and-the-birds-are-getting-scarce Or so the saying goes, well sort of close anyway.. having to split my time between two locations, one with no web access. Did curtail my keyboard activities. So what has been going on? I hear you say, I hope!! The end of 2017 proved to be really good with the influx of Hawfinch's across the country, and it seems most Church yards having one or more in the county (Shropshire). Naturally it was a photo fest as sites were identified, and visited particularly the more rural ones. Mind you the weather was not going to be kind with very few days having good light, but with some perseverance some good results were had. For example;

Hawfinch-2Hawfinch-2

Whitcliffe common above Ludlow was a good spot.  With some of the Church finch's.

Hawfinch-Fitz-3Hawfinch-Fitz-3 Hawfinch-FitzHawfinch-Fitz A Penduline Tit had taken up residence, once again in Gloucester, and it would have been rude not to go a do it, a cracking bird and confident if a little shy at times. However it did strike a pose..

Penduline-tit-2Penduline-tit-2 This was one of those rare occasions which allowed some good exposures.

Penduline tit 3Penduline tit 3 Tucking into lunch!

At the local reserve Redpol and Goldfinch were performing nicely in front of the hide on several days.

 

So now we wait to see how the next few weeks pan out, hoping for an extended wind change and temperature drop freezing the smaller waters and floods pushing wildfowl into more concentrated areas. Hmmm! we shall see..

rEDPOL-SIDE-ONRedpol side on Redpol and SeedsRedpol and Seeds Goldfinch-on-teaselGoldfinch-on-teasel Well that does it for the last two months, and here is hoping things start to improve soon.

Check back to find out

Bye

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) churchyard gloucester goldfinch hawfinch penduline plockton redpol seeds shropshire tit trees wetlands yew https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2018/1/chritmas-is-coming-and-the-birds-are-getting-scarce Wed, 03 Jan 2018 18:55:56 GMT
High winds, high hill and high hopes! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/11/high-winds-high-hill-and-high-hopes The initial report of a Common Rock thrush in Wales crossed the screen of the phone in Notifications. WOW!  now that is one within a couple of hours that is needed for the year and UK life list, fantastic indeed. So everyday I would check the news to see if it was still there and not gone or been predated. And then some two weeks after the initial report the opportunity arose to go for it, was it still there? constant checks on the news channels as we arrived it was posted as still there Phew!!

The wind was brisk and cold and the over trouser's were on, just two more Kilometers to go over the hill to quarry three?? being early only a couple of others were about and looking at something, the pulse increased more from the walk than bird,,, Don't want to seem over keen innit? So what was all the fuss about? A rare bird to the UK indeed, although there have been a few over the years, But none I could connect with, at last arrival gave the first views of this beautiful bird and it dropped down to within no more than 10 feet! Well I proceeded to shoot it! for the next couple of hours, no coffee or sandwiches but never noticed the lack, in the presence of this little stunner.

Common-Rock-Thrush-1Common-Rock-Thrush-1

Common Rock Thrush.

It was so confiding that at times it was too close, providing for some awesome photo's

Common-Rock-Thrush-2Common-Rock-Thrush-2 Wing-FlashWing-Flash

Some upkeep required in the sunshine.

The colour under the wing, often hidden was stunning.

Feeding-timeFeeding-time

A little light lunch which was followed by a little rest!

Size-comparison-Cattle-EgretSize-comparison-Cattle-Egret

A Cattle Egret, at the local Reserve Venus Pools.

A first for the county for me and for the reserve.

As normal it's short and sweet and brings me up to date. The only other thing was a visit to the coast in the high winds which produced some great birds like Great northern Diver and a fantastic Pomeranian Skua with large spoons another year first..

cheers Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) cattle ceredigeon colours common common rock thrush egret feed little preen quarry red rock thrush vagrant visitor wales worm https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/11/high-winds-high-hill-and-high-hopes Wed, 01 Nov 2017 21:00:03 GMT
And where to pause !!! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/10/and-where-to-pause So where to next? The beach at Cley was the venue. The wind was staying from the south west , which whilst not giving much did produce the occasional nice bird. Like Red-throated Diver, Juvenile Guillemot and a smattering of Gannet, with sea duck well out near the Wind turbines. Then it was off to the NWT café for a break and then down to the hides for some good birding. The water level was down and had some good flocks of waders and duck about.

so what did the camera get?

 

 

Godwit-VolunteersGodwit-Volunteers Black-tailed Godwit.

A-few-Golden-PloverA-few-Golden-Plover A small group of Golden Plover.

Bar-tailed-Godwit-Volunteers-marshBar-tailed-Godwit-Volunteers-marsh Bar-tailed Godwit.

Turnstone-Brancaster-harbourTurnstone-Brancaster-harbour Turnstone.

Ruff-Titchwell-17Ruff-Titchwell-17 Ringed Plover.

So there the ones from Norfolk, the next port of call was to Spurn for the day and the same was going on, south Westerly winds. Thankfully there as some nice bit s and pieces, like Arctic Warbler, Slavonian Grebe and Rose-coloured Starling so happy with a day at spurn, oops nearly forgot Twite difficult to get recently.

The final port of call was to be New Brighton the Saturday proved a bust but the weather for Sunday was promising to see the wind swing round to Westerly's  pushing some fine birds in to the rive mouth and coast. The best of the day was definitely a Pomeranian Skua with brilliant large spoons, a flyover Great-northern Diver, a number of Leach's Petrel were reported but missed them, Bugger! Boy was it rough, the sea coming over the wall all along the promenade and sand coming so fast it would strip you skin of  if you let it.

Well the you go all up to date for now Now bring on the bad weather!!!

Cheers Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) avocet blakney cafe cley diver duck flocks hides mud nwt plover ringed scoter throatedgannets titchwell waders water https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/10/and-where-to-pause Mon, 23 Oct 2017 18:50:37 GMT
Where to Start ? and where to stop? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/10/where-to-start-and-where-to-stop From the middle of September until the middle of October, a lot of miles have been added to the tripometer thingy, from Norfolk to Neston Cheshire and to East Yorkshire Easington, and of course some fantastic birds along the way.

An amazing thing is that you go East and the action unleashes on the West, so you go West and, yep, it kicks of on the East coast, and Spurn finally turns up some decent stuff, thank goodness.

So where to start? ok so time in Norfolk.

The week prior to arrival the winds were Easterly and things were arriving nicely, however the week of arrival they had swung to the South and South west, and the movement more or less dried up. Not to get to depressed it was day one, and of course Titchwell was calling, and the bacon butties were shouting "eat me!"

The first news was of a Yellow Browed Warbler in and around the picnic area, as per the norm it was not found, so of to the hides with Marsh Harrier along the path. The Island Hide provided a couple of nice Water Rail and a couple of stunning Ruff, A large flock of Golden Plover settled in the distance, opportunities abound. 

So initial captures,

Ruff-some-collarRuff-some-collar

 Ruff

Little Stint

Bar-tailed Godwit

Golden-Plover-TitchwellGolden-Plover-Titchwell Golden Plover

Brent-Geese-1Brent-Geese-1 Brent Geese

Black-tailed Godwit

Little-Egret-TitchwellLittle-Egret-Titchwell Little Egret.

Snowbunting-Titchwell-beachSnowbunting-Titchwell-beach Snow Bunting on the beach.

A few from the RSPB reserve at Titchwell. The next stop was Thornham Marsh and Brancaster Harbour.

Comments are appreciated.

thanks 

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) bar-tailed godit beach black brent browed egret geese godwit golden little stint plover rspb ruff tailed titchwell warbler yello https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/10/where-to-start-and-where-to-stop Fri, 20 Oct 2017 19:46:22 GMT
A catchup on a theme, https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/9/a-catchup-on-a-theme With the inclement weather continuing it has become difficult photographing species not done to death already this season, the hope is that as Autumn arrives some of the ,long awaited Waders will drop into the county, so far it has been pretty slim pickings.

So to keep in trim! who am I kidding? it was out as much as possible curtailed by a stint (sic) in Devon with mother not well. but even there some nice Gannet shots were had sadly,the hoped for Shearwater passage did not get seen, So with some nice weather and a well stocked garden there were lots of Macro opportunities so guess what? yup! here follows some of the bugs from a garden in North Devon. And a few other places.

 

Green tiger BeetleScope those Jaws.

Green Tiger beetle

Corazus Hyoscyami (Rhopatidae)

Now do I either use the Latin names or the "Vulgar" a paradigm which stumps me at time mostly as I don't know the Latin and the reference books are a bit thin on the ground here ceptin Birds and a few others..

Landing gear down Flaps hundreds.

Hawthorn ShieldbugHawthorn Shieldbug Shieldbug-instarShieldbug-instar Shed-skinShed-skin Hawthorn Sheildbug after the occupant left in a new suit.

Apart from the in flight Bee the above are of the Hawthorn Sheildbugs a really cute (ish) bug .

Mirid-bugMirid-bug Mirid Bug. 
 Pantilius tunicatus . Shropshire

So as not bore anyone I shall complete this entry now and make a start on the next one to catch up. so thanks for the visit leave any comments and hope to see you again.

Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) bee beetle bug fire flight flying garden green hawthorn macro photography shielbug tiger https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/9/a-catchup-on-a-theme Tue, 19 Sep 2017 16:14:34 GMT
Bugs and stuff https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/8/bugs-and-stuff With the weather being a bit iffy, there was a lot of editing and house chores needing to be caught up on, So taking the Macro out and having it ready was quite entertaining. The Lavender was earning it's keep with an average of thirty Bees, of various species moving amongst the flower heads. These proved a brilliant distraction from cleaning and washing.

Honey-BeeHoney-Bee

BUFF-TAILED-BEEBUFF-TAILED-BEE

Bee-1Bee-1

Bee-mimic HoverflyBee-mimic Hoverfly

 

Bee-landingBee-landing

Bee-Fly-byBee-Fly-by

WASP-,-BEE-SpWASP-,-BEE-Sp

Dasyphora-cyanella-(Meigen)Dasyphora-cyanella-(Meigen)

So there a very easy blog for a change, and proved an interesting time identifying some of the species, and education indeed

enjoy and until the next one

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/8/bugs-and-stuff Wed, 02 Aug 2017 14:37:04 GMT
A right good looking bird! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/7/a-right-good-looking-bird  The 4am start for a long drive over to deepest darkest Wales was the start to what proved to be a stunning trip, The target this time was the Ynslas Estuary, the aberdovey to be correct, and there had been reports of a 1st Summer Female King Eider on the small river mouth of the Leri.

An early start proved the key as the boats from this inlet had not yet started to ply  the waters so all was quiet.

So with wet feet from the misted grass we arrived to a right good looking bird on the river Leri.

And it performed very nicely thank you.

1st-Winter-(female)-King-Eider-YN1st-Winter-(female)-King-Eider-YN

 A bit of a shake after a longish dive was the first shot of the day.

Diagnostic or what?

1st-Winter-female-King-Eider-YN1st-Winter-female-King-Eider-YN Followed with a bit of coy posing showing some fine detail.

And then the first boats started up and she moved toward the river mouth this was the last shot we were able to get as she found herself a nice dry islet and settled down to have a kip.

We waited for a long time but the boats kept coming and going so there was no sign of her returning

So it was of to the services for a good bacon butty and a coffee

So the early birders got the shots they were after albeit a bit distant.

Hope you have a great day tomorrow.

cheers

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) aberdovey boats ceredigion eider female king leri mist mussles river summer wales water wet ynslas https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/7/a-right-good-looking-bird Sat, 08 Jul 2017 23:48:31 GMT
They start to fly in June and July! includes the Emperors clothes https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/7/they-start-to-fly-in-june-and-july WhiteYou would normally expect in June and July or at least assume, that the sun will shine and all those lovely bugs and butterflies will be on the wing. So having to sit out some pretty drastic weather, wet and dreary was a real pain. So it was clean kit and grab whatever chance came along to get out. The sudden news on the grape vine was of Bee Eaters in Notts, and as they were close by it was a no brainer. Arrival was well early with only a few cars parked up, so kit on and trek down to the site for exciting birds.

They were distant and staying that way as they took foraging flights and not very often failing to catch Bees and other prey. Bee-Eater--Trio-ELBee-Eater--Trio-EL

Like the occasional Dragonfly.

The sky was overcast for a fair portion of the morning but as the light improved they looked stunning.

BEE-EATER-EAST-LEAKEBEE-EATER-EAST-LEAKE Such colours.

Bee-Eater-EL-2aBee-Eater-EL-2a The only real close low level bee chase.

This was the start of a brilliant weekend. Always keeping an eye on the flight times of Butterflies, it was time for a few nice ones hopefully.

One that was wanted is the Purple Emperor,  So a trip to Northamptonshire to Fermyn Woods  was done, as it was the closest place to find them.

The morning broke with a fantastic sunrise, bright and very few clouds in the sky. So spirits were high.

Arriving to find the pay and display machine had been stolen!!! and a sign saying "get tickets at café", which did not open for around two and a half hours. Sod that, it was off we went, bit of blind leading the blind really , White Admiral was a good starter for the day. a record view of an Emperor and Purple Hairstreak  only, but we got the info of where the most likely spot might be and off we went.

There were a lot of Butterflies seen, Comma, Red Admiral, Silver-washed Fritillary, Small Skipper and Large Skipper, Purple Hairstreak, Ringlet, Meadow Brown, Small Heath, Green-veined White. Large White, Small White, Speckled Wood and White Admiral, just no Emperors. It was a long trudge back to the car for coffee and a re-think. the breeze was dropping and the clouds dispersing , a hurried lunch was had.

And back along the main track, with a lot of stops for various Butterflies. I glimpsed a movement in the old peripheral vision, which was a miracle in it self,,, and there on the floor in front of me was the target a beautiful Purple Emperor mineralising,  the sun was really showing the purple sheen on the upper wing beautifully.

Purple-Emporer-posePurple-Emporer-pose Purple-EmperorPurple-Emperor Purple-Emperor-feeding-1Purple-Emperor-feeding-1 PURPLE-EMPEROR-UNDERWINGPURPLE-EMPEROR-UNDERWING The underwing is spectacular.

And the Purple Hairstreak is just as spectacular when the sun gets on it.

Purple-Hairstreak-PH-16Purple-Hairstreak-PH-16 The Purple Hairstreak.

Purple-Hairstreak-PH-16-1Purple-Hairstreak-PH-16-1 The beautiful purple sheen.

And the last for this

Blog post.

The White Admiral. White AdmiralWhite AdmiralWhite Admiral

So a totally thrilling weekend a lot of miles but some reward! or what?

 

So there it is until the next time.

in the meantime go and enjoy some Nature

Cheers

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) admiral bee colours eaters emperor hairstreak leake nottinghamshire purple white white admiral https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/7/they-start-to-fly-in-june-and-july Tue, 04 Jul 2017 20:48:39 GMT
Norfolk part two, Earth Dwellers. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/6/norfolk-part-two-earth-dwellers  Travelling around Norfolk you can't help but come across the ubiquitous Brown Hare, feeding and cavorting around the fields along with Red-legged Partridge, and the now rare in many counties the Grey Partridge, Marsh Harriers and buzzards squabbling over carcases, Red Kites soaring the field margins and the worlds supply of Woodpigeons!

Red-legged-PartridgeRed-legged-Partridge Red-legged Partridge.

You know this gaudy little Partridge is also referred to as the French Hen in parts, with some saying the markings resembles the make up of the old women knitting at the Guillotine. Or some other such tale.

Like I said Brown Hares seem to be every where you looked, I think that might be an overstatement just seemed like it.

Brown-Hare-tastingBrown-Hare-tasting Brown Hare.

The Brown HareThe Brown Hare And again!

Grey-Partridge-maleGrey-Partridge-male Grey Partridge.

Calling-Grey-PartridgeCalling-Grey-Partridge Calling for his partner.

Mr-&-Mrs-Grey-PartridgeMr-&-Mrs-Grey-Partridge

And he finds her so it's out for dinner.

Swallowtail-Butterfly-2017Swallowtail-Butterfly-2017 Swallow-tailed Butterfly Hickling Broad.

Such a beautiful sight and a first for me in UK.

It being the penultimate day news broke of a very nice female Red-necked Phalarope at WWT Welney

So another first for the UK and if still there a great catch, and it was on both counts.

Red-necked-Phalarope-a-Red-necked-Phalarope-a- Beautiful Female.

Red-necked-Phalarope-cRed-necked-Phalarope-c Stunner.

Red-necked-Phalarope-bRed-necked-Phalarope-b Could not have wished for better views.

And to bring a fantastic trip to a close and being on the route back to Shropshire it would have been rude not to stop for a quick Stone Curlew, and as it would have it on display really nicely,

Stone-Curlew-WH-2017Stone-Curlew-WH-2017 So the four days were over and what a four days they had been fantastic birds all round a trio of UK firsts amongst the rain wind and sunshine brilliant so can it be a repeat trip on sept or October for some more super birds on revers migration? I am sure you will find out

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) red-necked phalarope red necked phalarope swallowtail grey partridge brown hare eurasian legged norfolk https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/6/norfolk-part-two-earth-dwellers Fri, 16 Jun 2017 00:17:40 GMT
Norfolk escapades. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/6/part-deux  

 Norfolk always seems to turn up some fantastic photo opportunities all over the place and it did not disappoint this time either.

The day of arrival it was brilliant a little wind but no rain thankfully, But that night the forecast was for high winds gusting up to 50MPH, it wasn't wrong the next morning it was peeing down and getting blown sideways along the causeway to the hide, thank goodness for Paramo jacket and trouser I stayed dry as a bone.

HIGH-KEY-LAPWINGSHIGH-KEY-LAPWINGS

Reflective Lapwings.

The first bird to present itself literally was the Cetti's as getting set up photo's were taken at close quarters but not by me ,Bugger. But then out of nowhere a nice Turtle Dove dropped in to a naked tree and posed really well.

Turtle-DoveTurtle-Dove Turtle Dove.

Turtle-Dove-TitchwellTurtle-Dove-Titchwell Turtle Dove in mid preen.

An amazing period of time early morning in the car park at Titchwell RSPB reserve. And was so confiding as we moved around trying to find the best position.

Little-Tern-Burnham-OveryLittle-Tern-Burnham-Overy Littlle Tern Brancaster Harbour.

Little-Tern-hoverLittle-Tern-hover

Spotted some breakfast perhaps?

The harbour also frequented by Common and Sandwich Terns.

Young-AvocetYoung-Avocet Avocet chicks were plentiful with very attentive and protective parents watching every Black-headed Gull.

Avocet-Woodlane-2017Avocet-Woodlane-2017 Avocet feeding and watching the young.

Now-whatNow-what And there were plenty of young birds around being fed.

Little-GullLittle-Gull 3rd Summer Little Gull.

little-Gull-3rd-Summerlittle-Gull-3rd-Summer 3rd Summer Little Gull.

Juv-Long-tailed-TitJuv-Long-tailed-Tit Young Long-tailed Tit.

Days two and three were the same wet and windy to the n'th degree, so we moved away a bit from the coast and struck it lucky, with Brown Hares, red-legged Partridge and Grey Partridge and the car never moved amazing. time to say the least. So check in again for another episode from Norfolk

laters peeps.

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Avocet Brancaster Broad Dove Gull Harbour Hickling Little NWT RSPB Tern Titchwell Turtle Dove https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/6/part-deux Thu, 15 Jun 2017 22:57:05 GMT
Goodness what a time. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/5/goodness-what-a-time It has been a little while since the last entry to the Blog, and it has been a real busy period indeed, flitting around some wonderful places north and south with dare I admit it a Twitch! so between Burton Mere, Leighton Moss Strawberry Banks and north Wales it was hectic to say the least.

So what on earth was achieved with this frenetic rush around? I shall show you with a little blurd for each picture. and even might have do a part two to ensure you get the full monty!

A blast from the past that never got blogged.

Red-footed FalconRed-footed Falcon The Red-footed Falcon

How I missed it out I don't know.

And so to start with some of the earlier periods of the month.

Avocet-Woodlane-2017Avocet-Woodlane-2017 Avocet at Woodlane Shropshire, and it was a one day wonder thankfully it was got.

bUFF-SAND-3Buff breasted Sandpiper -3 The Buff-breasted Sandpiper at Burton Mere Cheshire

A fantastic find which thankfully stayed for the masses, A first in the UK for me so I was welled pleased to say the least.

As the following one or two might attest to !

Buff-breasted-Sandpiper-a-BM-2017Buff-breasted-Sandpiper-a-BM-2017 Bully-Boy-and-Buff-breasted-SandpiperBully-Boy-and-Buff-breasted-Sandpiper Buff-breasted-and-Blackwit-BM-2017Buff-breasted-and-Blackwit-BM-2017 A stunning little wader indeed.

Femal-Redstart-a-EV-2017Femal-Redstart-a-EV-2017 Female Common Redstart

Elan Valley was the next port of call for some really nice close encounters with some nice birds and a fantastic pasty Mmmmm!

Male-Redstart-a-EV-2017Male-Redstart-a-EV-2017 Male Redstart

SPOTTED-FLYCATCHER-EV-2017Spotted Flycatcher -EV-2017 The Spotted Flycatcher. these birds were not long on site and busy searching out partners and nest sites in the woods opposite the Visitor centre

I thought I would have do the Part 1 and 2 scenario this time round so as to ensure you get the full picture, so keep an eye out for part two in the next few days..

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Anglesey Black Buff-breasted Sandpiper Cemlyn Coast Flycatcher Redstart Sandwich Sea Tern White migration whitethroat https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/5/goodness-what-a-time Wed, 31 May 2017 07:00:00 GMT
A little of what you fancy https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/5/a-little-of-what-you-fancy With the finding of the Night Heron at Venus Pool it produced a mini twitch by many a birder from as far as Ireland. Many Photographs have appeared since it re-located to the Dingle In Shrewsbury Giving many some fantastic photo opportunities. So not be left out here is one of a few from me.

along with a catch up from the month so far.

Night-Heron-cNight-Heron-c The Night Heron.

Sedge Warbler-bb2017Sedge Warbler-bb2017 Sedge Warbler in full song.

Whitethroat-BB-2017Whitethroat-BB-2017 Whitethroat blasting it out.

And a bit quieter.

Garden-Warbler-CC-a-2017Garden-Warbler-CC-a-2017 Garden Warbler.

Garden-Warbler-CC-2017Garden-Warbler-CC-2017 Also in full song.

Tree-Pipit-CC-2017Tree-Pipit-CC-2017 Tree Pipit in display flight.

Dotterel-LM-a-2017Dotterel-LM-a-2017 A nice Dotterel on the Long Mynd a fantastic "got it" for the day, an earlier check produced no sightings but lots of swirling mist about at that point.

Dotteral-LM-2017-5Dotteral-LM-2017-5 The other of the pair in the driving rain and cold wind.

Wood-Warbler-CC-2017Wood-Warbler-CC-2017 Wood Warbler.

There you go catch up done for now.

more to come later I Hope.

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Garden Heron Night Sedge Warbler WarblerNight Whitethroat Wood https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/5/a-little-of-what-you-fancy Tue, 09 May 2017 01:44:32 GMT
The Shropshire Quartet WOW! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/4/what-is-going-on-shropshire Since late Autumn last year (2016), Yellow-browed Warblers were being reported from all over the UK, even one in a garden in Condover the other side of Shrewsbury, did I go to see it ? well of course! but even two trips failed to find the little blighter, So I resigned myself to a trip to Kinver to get an all too brief a view, but a view it was and so on the year list it went. Nothing more was heard from the county until One was found practically on my doorstep, well guess what, late Sunday afternoon I was, with one other late arrival, scouring the copse where it was last seen. An hour passed and the light was fading when suddenly it was found high up, feeding frantically. Boom! My first for the county was had. I was well chuffed.

There followed over the next few days several more visits until finally it was to appear less than 20 feet away feeding in a sycamore sapling, to my delight, and so it was photographed.

 

The Yellow-browed Warbler.

Then odd as it may be, near a year to the week an Iberian Chiffchaff re-appeared at the same site as last year, the Granville Country park, well not wishing to look a gift horse in the mouth so to speak, it was duly visited and sure enough true to its form was singing it's head off. Not as showy as last year but on the odd occasion it was low and close.

Iberian ChiffchaffIberian Chiffchaff

A stunning Iberian Chiffchaff.

What a brilliant start to the month, what on earth could trump these two little beauties? It did not take long before news broke of a mega for the county found at Venus Pool, an adult Night Heron, I had to read that tweet twice! Coffee thrown into travel mug, bag and tripod in car and away within five minutes, it was with bated breath as I was held up by every tractor in the county on a go slow, eventually they moved over and in a couple of minutes I had arrived to a surprisingly near empty carpark, I had beaten the crowds, yay!.

I was soon onto the bird which had backed it self into the vegetation at the side of the pool, a difficult shot with all the obstructions so it was only record shots I'm afraid.

The Night Heron.

Wow! What a week this turned out to be, unbelievable, But wait! A Shorelark photographed on Titterstone Clee, NO! WTF! Really! As it transpired, it had been reported way back in the March, so for it to still be here was amazing knowing how busy that place gets with walkers etc.

And so on the road direct from Venus pool for a second fantastic bird of the weekend, as the trip was fraut with, is it still there?

Arriving to find others encamped and watching the ridge intently for any sign of the Lark. Then, BOOM! high on the ridge OMG fantastic bird, it gradually descended to a much more manageable distance, I remained at the base of the hill as others climbed up for better access, and down it came, so Shorelark got!

The Shorelark.

Well the week came to an end with all got and two gone, So it was back to looking and waiting for the migrants to return to territories with lots more stuff still to arrive.

So watch this space

Cheers

Paul

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) browed chiffchaff clee copse granville heron iberian iberian chiffchaff lark ludlow night night heron park pool shore shorelark shrewsbury tellford titterstone venus warbler yellow yellow-browed warbler https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/4/what-is-going-on-shropshire Thu, 13 Apr 2017 18:10:35 GMT
Rare Siberian visitor to Telford Shropshire. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/4/rare-siberian-visitor-to-telford-shropshire Nearly every year I make the effort to catch up with any Yellow-browed Warblers, well those within fuel allowance at least. If you consider the weight being barley more than a Goldcrest, and the distance they travel from the Siberian Taiga they deserve to be seen and admired for their endurance. 2016 saw one in Condover Shropshire which proved too elusive for me, so I went for the one at Kinver and very nice it was too. But to distant for any photo's. So how pleased was I when there was one reported virtually on the doorstep so to speak, 2.5 K,meters away in Shawbirch. Needless to say I was like a dog with two tails to catch up with it on the Sunday pm.

But still remained absent from the lens unfortunately, so it was go back and go back, until BOOM! nailed it! and a stupid grin on the Boat race. So why was I pleased let me show you.

Yellow-browed-Wabler-gYellow-browed-Wabler-g

Virtually all of the time was spent grabbing aphids and any other insects it could get hold of, interspersed with a bit of calling and preening but rarely still for more than a few seconds at a time. Assuming it has spent the winter somewhere in the county and how tatty it is things can only improve along with plumage I wonder how long it will stay in this little copse ?

So if you can go try and hook up with this little star.

Paul.

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) yellow-browed warbler https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/4/rare-siberian-visitor-to-telford-shropshire Thu, 06 Apr 2017 18:02:37 GMT
March the Thirty oneth! can you believe it? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/march-the-thirty-oneth-can-you-believe-it Tomorrow is the start of another new month, April first, and with the slight improvement in the weather we find Pied Flycatcher are back on station, Willow Warblers singing from the tree tops Ospreys at or on way to their preferred nesting sites across the country. how happy are the watchers out there as more new birds will be added to the year list, with many hoping to achieve the 200 total or better. And with the warmer weather the chance of an overshoot always being hoped for. So what has been going on over the last few weeks? not a lot but a few nice things came about as the days went by, so to start with Shoveler are displaying as are Mute swans, all involving lots of head bobbing and chuntering loudly. I shall keep this short as the sun is shining out there and I am off to enjoy it.. So here you go.

Meadow-Pipit-WEMeadow-Pipit-WE

Meadow Pipit early morning light.

Red-Grouse-WERed-Grouse-WE

Red Grouse in morning sunshine.

Mute-swans-grebesqueMute-swans-grebesque

Mute Swans Grebesque.

Goosander-FemaleGoosander-Female

Female Red-breasted Merganser.

Wheatear on South Stack.

ChiffchaffChiffchaff

Chiffchaff.

StonechatStonechatStonechat on Gorse

Stonechat on Gorse.

Stonechat looks rightStonechat looks right

And again a lovely male.

So all caught up at last, thank goodness,

You know I feel a Rant coming on,,, so here's the thing, if we take the number of dogs in the country and the average weight of their droppings  at 1kg that will amount to a whole pile of shit, we would be getting into the realms of unbelievable piles of shit! Yes! many owners pick it up bag it and walk of with it,, until they can not find anywhere to put it, no bins. So the result is "no one looking I shall sling into the trees, where it will hang for anything up to 5 years or more. this is most prevalent on Nature Reserves and the like. AND NO ONE DOES ANYTHING ABOUT IT! however get a photo of culprit\s and send to council with vehicle Reg if you can get it, the council will prosecute with sufficient evidence,,, or retrieve it and give it to them back hang it on their wipers, they don't like that at all. So go on chase your parish, town and county council to provide bins ,,, recycle some old oil drums and empty them !!! cant see it happening oddly enough....

Paul

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) chiffchaff grouse heather meadow pipit red grouse red-breasted merganser stonechat wheatear https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/march-the-thirty-oneth-can-you-believe-it Fri, 31 Mar 2017 17:27:50 GMT
Madness in March https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/madness-in-march Fly Fishing!

Fly FishingFly Fishing

 I know it has nothing to with the intended March Madness! Just like the story here and the unknown ending.

Anyhow I digress a little, the idea for March was to trawl the fields of the North of the County (Shropshire) on the hunt for The Brown Hare (Lepus europaeus). All the normal haunts seem to be devoid of anything remotely like them, where there was normally several there were none! But eventually a pair were found and putting on a show for me closer than I was expecting.

Brown-Hare-SLPBrown-Hare-SLP

Just love those ears.

patiencepatience

The gentle approach.

apprehensionapprehension

A few jitters.

Left-hookLeft-hook

She is not happy and he is expecting the ensuing slap.

right-hookright-hook

And the next.

slappedslapped after these it heated up.

not-this-timenot-this-time

And the old left right combo.

EnthusiasmEnthusiasm

A leap of faith gets a severe kicking.

SuccessSuccess

And finally he, Percy verance! gets his reward for all the battering and rejection he got.

So a successful hunt in the end, but it reflects the serious amount of shooting taking it's toll on the Shropshire populations, also the coursers illegally hunting them is it any surprise they are difficult to find..

well hope you come back soon..

Paul.

 

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Brown Hare Fishing Fly Grebe Hares Hunting Lepus Little Shropshire brown fields mammal https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/madness-in-march Sat, 18 Mar 2017 01:58:14 GMT
It's all kicking off! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/its-all-kicking-off  So is March proving as good as I supposed in the last Blog post? well the short answer is yes! and thirteen days later there has been a lot of movement as the first migrants start passing through the county. Wheatear, Sand Martin, Whitethroat to mention a few. As you can imagine getting to where they may be does involve a load of travelling about the county.

The mating rituals are really evident, Robins singing and displaying, Coot being as aggressive , even more so than normal, Shoveler head bobbing and mallard gangs chasing lone females all over the water. Little Grebes vocalising loudly with the odd bit of displaying going on.

One of the many Shoveler in flight displays.

Shoveler-flightShoveler-flight

Redshank-1Redshank-1

Redshank drops in during its movement north.

  Common snipe flightCommon snipe flight

Common Snipe were displaying in flight to the females.

Triple LinnitsTriple Linnits

The numbers in the Linnit flock were very good indeed.

 

A few of the moments from last week, But being March it surly must be time to search the county for Mad March Hares.

Hmmm! we shall see what I find.

see you in a little while.

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Cadis Fly Linnit Migration Redhank chasing displaying enus grebe little mallard pool shoveller https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/its-all-kicking-off Fri, 17 Mar 2017 18:08:02 GMT
Shhhh! softly softly catchy goosander! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/shhhh-be-quiet The local fishing pool occasionally hosts different birds, mostly Mallard, Black-headed gulls, Canada Geese and the odd farmyard species. But on the odd occasion, and it is only a small urban pond, the lovely Goosander makes an appearance. This morning was one of those moments, in the pouring rain a pair of these superb birds made an appearance, with no kit with me it was a case of turn round and hightail it back for the camera and wet weather kit.

Fortunately they stayed put, so an approach behind the available cover allowed me a good close approach the rain damping my footsteps. it worked as they did not take flight as per normal, so a couple of shots were got before I could get to wet.

  Male-GoosanderMale-Goosander

Male Goosander in todays Rain.

And the female.

female-goosanderfemale-goosander

I was happy to get these two together this morning, now there are a couple of other species picked up since the last episode of this blog.

One of those shots that you really have to be in the right place at the right time, Weed Dancing Great Crested Grebes, a fantastic performance to watch and even better when captured on camera.

The next species is also a great one to capture, The Green Woodpecker, more often than not heard and not seen as it calls from somewhere.

Here it is prospecting for a new nest site on this old stump.

at-the-topat-the-top

Pleased with this as it was near two hundred feet away and there was a second bird present just could not get them together.

So March is already proving to be interesting and hopefully will increase as migration kicks in fully.

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Dancing Green Water Woodpecker female goosander male pair rain stealth stump weed wood https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/3/shhhh-be-quiet Fri, 03 Mar 2017 18:34:59 GMT
A little excitement in February again. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/2/a-little-excitement-in-february-again February certainly tends to be a lack lustre month for many, resorting to the coastal sites for activity or crowding the honeypot site for what ever they can find. And so it seemed this year, mind you the weather was nearly pleasant for most of the month. So after the Hawfinch things went quiet. Until a nice find was had in Lincolnshire again,having dipped on the White-billed Diver there was some trepidation on getting up at 3AM for another Lincs  trip.

Arriving at Willow tree Fen LNR reserve before first light was a real bonus as only three or four others arrived at the same time ish! So coats on , nasty cold wind whipping across the fen, as usual! Kit ready and we were off. After about an hour it suddenly popped out from the reeds onto the path and proceeded to look for tid bits , A stunner The 1st winter male Blue Throat, so walkstool set up tripod and optics ready , it was not long before it was within range, in fact so close the Tele-Converter had to come off.

so what happened next? this.

1st Winter Male Bluethroat1st Winter Male Bluethroat

1st Winter male Bluethroat BluethroatBluethroat Now! you can't complain about the cold, when you are presented with crippling views like this. He continued to perform for the gathering crowd for quiet some time.

redpoll-VP-02redpoll-VP-02

 A lovely Redpoll at the local reserve

Redpoll-vp-11-02-2017Redpoll-vp-11-02-2017

And the lovely female

Redpoll-12-02-2017Redpoll-12-02-2017

And a good view of the full colour coming to the for, just beautiful.

Strange to think that the last time I had a Bluethroat was also in Lincs at the Ouse washes way back in the mid seventies, but that really was a fleeting glimpse so I am very pleased to have this bird for February

Well march will soon be with us and promises to be outstanding, as it is the time off leaping , jumping and otherwise general running around! and then there is the hares...

So there you have it and hopefully next month Grebes weed dancing and Hares Boxing,

we'll see.

until then see you again?

 

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Blue Bluethroat LNR Lincolnshire Lincs Red Throat Vagrant White Willow tree fen migrant https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/2/a-little-excitement-in-february-again Wed, 22 Feb 2017 13:03:37 GMT
Just look at that nose! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/2/just-look-at-that-nose  I almost forgot, the one species I had been after photographing for a while. This is the first time I had got close to these magnificent birds, A trip to the Forest of Dean got them on the list at last. strangely confiding and the light seemed to do them justice, anyway you decide.

Hawfinch FemaleHawfinch Female Hawfinch maleHawfinch male Hawfinch FemaleHawfinch Female hawfinch-7hawfinch-7

 A stunning bird, and that beak looks like it could do you some serious harm if it got your finger. The objective is to now get a decent out in the open shot of the Male, the one that did appear was not so brazen as the females were.

Enjoy

Cheers Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Hawfinch beak colourfull large https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/2/just-look-at-that-nose Wed, 01 Feb 2017 00:07:06 GMT
A final catch up for January https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/a-final-catch-up-for-january It's the last day of January and still a lot to do, so here you will find those photo's that did not make the cut previously.

Common-BuzzardCommon-Buzzard

Common Buzzard

Lonely !

KnotKnot

Knot and Oystercatcher

Knot and redshankKnot and redshank

Knot and Redshank

Knot-and-SanderlingKnot-and-Sanderling

Knot and Sanderling

OystercatcherOystercatcher

Landing Oystarcatcher

Peregrine FalconPeregrine Falcon

Sanderling and escort

Oystercatcher

Redshank

It's cold up there.

Photobomb

OystercatchersOystercatchers

Jostling for position

Peregrine FalconPeregrine Falcon

After failing to grab prey she came right over me.

Peregrine FalconPeregrine Falcon

A little further out

I think that's about it for January now so hope you have enjoyed what is normally not so busy and it looks like February is going to up the game , I hope

I shall Blog as it happens well as soon as I can.

See you soon

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Buzzard Common Gull Hunt Knot Lesser-Black-backed Gull Meole North Ostercatcher Peregrine Redshank Sanderling Sea Snow Tide l parade waves https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/a-final-catch-up-for-january Tue, 31 Jan 2017 17:53:27 GMT
Another wild Goose chase and other stuff. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/another-wild-goose-chase-and-other-stuff With January closing in a couple of days, I realised I had not published an update on the state of things in my birding times out in the Bundoo! So here you are the latest bits and pieces from the last week or two.

So where do I start? Sunday the 22nd, but where to go ? Bitterns were showing well in a lot of locations, So it was decided to go for the birds at Slimbridge the WWT grounds in Gloucestershire. The birds were there and showing, not good but adequate but being a weekend and Sunday to boot big mistake! The hides with goodly birds on show were over packed. But moving around a few showed really well as did this one.

A very confiding Water Rail.

water-rail-zies-hidewater-rail-zies-hide

Followed by a very small wader over at the Rushy Pen, again packed but accessible , the bird remained distant but with some careful technique it was had and on film, so to speak. This Little Stint had drawn some large crowds.

Little-Stint-SlimbridgeLittle-Stint-Slimbridge Little StintLittle Stint

So two very nice species got and others to have a go at, The Bittern was still a no go, due to it having reverted to skulking mode, So a little time scanning the flock of European White-fronted Geese, the initial count was at 159, brilliant number on the field down at the Kingfisher hide. It had been a while since my last meeting with this species. I was happy, photos were got at extreme distance of near 200 meters.

White-fronted-Goose-4White-fronted-Goose-4 I was pleased with the shots at such a distance.

The Last species got was the Common Crane, there were nine out on the tac piece, performing some half hearted dance, managed a few photos as the following attests to.

Common-Crane-2Common-Crane-2 Common-CraneCommon-Crane

 

And that wraps up this update for today, a goodly few birds and there's better to come

See you on the next missive

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bittern Common Crane Geese Glouscestershire Little Stint Slimbridge Stint WWT Water Rail White fronted https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/another-wild-goose-chase-and-other-stuff Mon, 30 Jan 2017 01:11:37 GMT
I do like to be beside the seaside! on a high tide. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/i-do-like-to-be-beside-the-seaside-on-a-high-tide Well Skinnygrove proved a fine success with some stunning views, in fact they were crippling. A couple of weeks later it was the turn of the Wirrel to host us, on another wind swept and very cold coast for the first Spring tide at 9.7mtr's  "ish". The draw here was the fact of high water and the 7 foot gap from road to possible tide line. Arriving at around 9:45 the place was vacant, apart from people draggers and ball chasers it was the perfect location. Now rather than being able to sit in the car and use the protection it afforded,  there was a metal railing at just the critical height (Bugger) So when the time arrived and the RSPB trailer with groupies was sorted, it was stool comfy for bums big, tripod and big guns on the prom. Wheres the coffee and ice cream when you want one?, The wind coming in from the Irish sea was rough chilling to the bone in minutes, thank goodness for Paramo.

So there is the where, and the why, but the what! was the best bit indeed, and following is a selection of the species that were wanted.

Dunlin-Knot-flockDunlin-Knot-flock

Dunlin with the occasional Knot

Small group of Knot Where's-WaldoWhere's-Waldo

Where's Waldo? Mixed-FlockMixed-Flock

Mixed flock

Redshank-north-paradeRedshank-north-parade

Redshank

Knot-North-Parade-NestonKnot-North-Parade-Neston

Knot Brent-Geese-NestonBrent-Geese-Neston

Brent Geese Dunlin-NestonDunlin-Neston Dunlin

A fine time was had with far to many photo's to show here so I have kept to some of the species captured , the flock numbers were not as extensive as reported the previous day but impressive all the same. The dropping tide proved more productive as the birds hit the freshly exposed sand and eel grass. A good area for this was around the RNLI and toilet block area produced some excellent sanderling and the odd plover or two.

So there you are, want some good and interesting birds for your camera give it a go, oh! and a warning if your partial to an ice cream on the beach bring your own along with a flask of hot tea or coffee.

Give it go

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Brent Dunlin Flocks Geese Knot RSPB Redshank Seaside coffee ell grass ice cream sea tea tide wind https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/i-do-like-to-be-beside-the-seaside-on-a-high-tide Tue, 17 Jan 2017 16:53:36 GMT
Snow Buntings & Waxwings at the Seaside etcetera! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/snow-buntings-at-the-seaside Having dipped on the Black-throated Thrush, it was along the road to Conway, to B&Q in particular. No! not for some DIY bits, but for 37 Waxwings consuming the Rowan berries in the car park. And very obliging they were.

Waxwing-Llandudno.Waxwing-Llandudno.

  One of the Waxwings at B&Q

It was a hard thing to get dragged away after only an hour of free entertainment. But stories of over confiding Snow Buntings on the local beach was something not to be missed , having missed them for a couple of years.

And confiding they were as close as to have to move back as they insisted in coming closer. fantasatic opportunity to say the least.

Snow-Bunting-20161229Snow-Bunting-20161229 Snow-Bunting-PostedSnow-Bunting-Posted Strike a poseStand still he might not notice me.

Snow Buntings, as I said they were so confiding.

There was another beach that was beckoning and begging to be visited for an absolute stunning wee birdie, only trouble was it was a couple of hundred miles away in Cleveland, a small bay called Skinnygrove. So a stupid o'clock rise and of on another adventure . Arrival was into a wind whipping across the bay and driving the sand so hard exposed skin was stinging from the sand particles. The Eastern-black Redstart was initially skulking around among the boulders out of the wind, but gradually as the wind backed off, it began to be as showy as the Snow Buntings above.a stunning visitor to our shores and over five in the country, very territorial, chasing off food competitors with no delay. don't take my opinion see for yourself.

Eastern-Black-RedstartEastern-Black-Redstart Eatern-Black-redstart-2Eatern-Black-redstart-2 Eastern-Black-squeekEastern-Black-squeek eastern-black-redstart-3eastern-black-redstart-3 eastern-black-redstart-4eastern-black-redstart-4

Eastern-Black Redstart

A few cracking birds got for the 2017 album, and no doubt more to come,

why not come back for Blue Rock Thrush, Knot and Brent, Bean and Pink-footed Geese , Whooper and Bewick Swans also

 

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black Cleveland Eastern North Redstart Rowen Seaside Snow Wales Waxwing berries bunting https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2017/1/snow-buntings-at-the-seaside Tue, 17 Jan 2017 03:27:11 GMT
Skydancers https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/skydancers The joy of watching Harriers aerial performances is brilliant, the diving ducking and soaring, not forgetting their grappling .

marsh-fight-7marsh-fight-7

Marsh HarriersMarsh Harriers LeavingLeaving Passing PracticePassing Practice Marsh-fight-3Marsh-fight-3 Marsh-fight-2Marsh-fight-2

And that's it words dont do them justice so I shall leave it as it is .

oh! with 9 birds gathering at pre-roost, it was fantastic

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) dance food grapple marsh harrier passes reeds voles https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/skydancers Fri, 16 Dec 2016 17:06:31 GMT
Another foriegn rarity visits. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/another-foriegn-rarity-visits  Trying to get photographs of really rare visitors to our shores can be a real hit and miss affair, do you head of at first light? or before? do you wait to see if it still being reported as there? will it fly before i get there? You go anyway as if you do not you are liable to miss the whole thing. But most of the time you get lucky, settle down with all the hundreds of others hoping for a sight of this MEGA! rarity, in this case i was a Dusky Thrush.

 

 

Dusky-ThrushDusky-Thrush

A 03:00 start to get to the location was in order, this ensure arrival was well before dawn, a number of people did the same thing and arranged themselves about the Orchard waiting for dawn. once the location was pegged it was set up and wait, it wasn't to long before, in gloomy light ,the Dusky Thrush appeared in the trees for its breakfast.

A few shots were got before it disappeared for the rest of the morning. I grew cold and bored so, happy with what was got, it was time to get back to the car a warm coffee and the long drive back home totally knackered but happy to get such a rare bird in the bag.

Cheers Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) dusky thrush https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/another-foriegn-rarity-visits Thu, 15 Dec 2016 01:30:39 GMT
A confiding Cetti's https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/a-confiding-cettis The first thing you know of a Cetti's being there is the sudden call from the undergrowth, loud and distinct, But seeing one is not always the easiest of things for this diminutive bird.  A small indistinct brown warbler when you do set eyes on it is wonderful, 

Cetti's-1Cetti's-1

Cetti's-3Cetti's-3

Cetti'sCetti's Cetti'sCetti's

Catching sight of the under tail pattern is brilliant although not always possible, over the years  they have certainly taken up residence all over the place .

or it seems that way.

So short and sweet

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Cetti's Sudden Warbler call reeds tail under undergrowth water https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/a-confiding-cettis Mon, 05 Dec 2016 23:13:07 GMT
Once Bittern!! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/once-bittern Every year one of the most sought after on a birders list, is the Bittern. So well camouflaged and skulking in reed beds they are really difficult to find especially if they stand still. So hearing of one or more really showy Bitterns it was a non brianer, Just had to have a go. Two days in a Hide tries your patience to the max and you butt muscles thank goodness the stools had comfy bum tops. and so it was settle down and wait, and wait and wait,,, there in flight... So first sighting got. And then thirty minutes later it was there in front and doing the skulking along a dyke edge as it peered into the water intent on finding food. All of a sudden it was out in the open on the dyke top in plain view,,, hold breathe and press shutter gently, don't fluff it now, phew in the bag now for a few, no  lots more as it settled down to preen. unbelievable.

BitternBittern

BitternBittern

BitternBittern BitternBittern

BitternBittern

Well I did say a few more, the above are some of the action as it kept doing it's thing, my best opportunity to date. so as you can imagine took loads. several long distance flight shots were taken but not good enough for the Blog. Well there you have it Once Bittern! twice excited.

That was not all look out for the Marsh Harriers and Cetti's in the next release..

Cheers Paul.

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bewicks Bittern Cetti's Harrier Marsh Rail Reeds Water https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/12/once-bittern Mon, 05 Dec 2016 22:29:18 GMT
That's it on the downward slope now, 2017 ? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/11/yay-5-new-species-for-the-year As the year goes on you start to think of the birds missing from your year list, and very often it is the more common species that seem to be absent from the old locations. For me it is the more common species like Corn Bunting, Willow Tit and Little Owl, so as the end of yet another year approaches I shall be making an all out hunt for them to bolster a fairly miserable year list, without travelling to all the corners of the UK.

Some of the latest species grabbed.

 

Redpoll

Marsh Tit

ScaupScaup

Scaup (Priorslee Lake)

Long-tailed Duck (Ellesmere Shropshire)

Green-winged TealGreen-winged Teal

Green-winged Teal (Venus Pool)

SiskinSiskin

Siskin (Cors Dyfi)

Red-Kite-YnylasRed-Kite-Ynylas Red Kite (Ynyslas)

WaxwingWaxwing

Waxwing (Tai Gwyn)

Waxwing (Conwy)

Velvet ScoterVelvet Scoter Velvet Scoter (Trench pool Telford)

Velvet ScoterVelvet Scoter Velvet Scoter (Trench pool)

Marsh TitMarsh Tit

Marsh Tit.

With the weather getting  a lot colder, but remaining bright December could produce some good species !as we hurtle towards 2017 and the annual first of the Jan search for species to get the new list under way, I expect lots with vagrants close, and hoping they stay for the Jan 01 rush.

Doubt we shall have a 01/01/17 Hoopoe this time round.

So as not to bore you with loads of weird rants about random subjects I shall keep it at this

Enjoy and comments in the guest book or Blog end please.. 

Catch up with you around..

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) green-winged teal kite" long-tailed duck marsh tit red redpoll scaup siskin velvet scoter shropshire waxwing https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/11/yay-5-new-species-for-the-year Tue, 29 Nov 2016 12:24:00 GMT
Now that was some drawn out good weather for a change https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/11/now-that-was-some-drawn-out-good-weather-for-a-change Finding a flock of Golden Plover within reach of the lens about 40-50 feet away was a real bonus, even if it was raining right up your lens hood.

Several of the birds were sporting rings and a colour ring, which made the flock interesting, trying to collect as much info as possible to pass on. 

Goldn Plove Ceri RidgewayGoldn Plove Ceri Ridgeway

The rest of the flock dropped below the ridge and stayed low.

Goldn Plove Ceri RidgewayGoldn Plove Ceri Ridgeway

Having been buzzed by a Sparrow Hawk they took a while to settle again with close passes.

Goldn Plove Ceri RidgewayGoldn Plove Ceri Ridgeway

Once settled they worked the field searching for worms and bugs thoroughly.

Golden Plover Ceri RidgewayGolden Plover Ceri Ridgeway

Presenting themselves really well, a real gorgeous bird.

Golden Plover Ceri RidgewayGolden Plover Ceri Ridgeway

At times the rain was heavy and wind blown the temperature dropped and the windchill really made it cold.

The bonus was that they were in Shropshire.

Apart from one or two they seemed to be all juveniles.

The ring numbers all proved to be locally ringed birds so showing some site loyalty perhaps.

 

So there you go, a good Sunday out.

Cheers Paul.

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) ceri golden plover ridgeway https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/11/now-that-was-some-drawn-out-good-weather-for-a-change Wed, 09 Nov 2016 00:13:17 GMT
I don't think I shall do the Sibe! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/10/i-dont-think-i-shall-do-the-sibe  Well it's midweek and it's still showing very nicely thank you, and so I persuaded myself it was one not to miss. I was on the road by 05:30 a quick M'accydoodles with extra coffee and off. I remembered why I was not so keen on going as I hit the major roadways, chaos ruled nearly all the way, to be fair though the only real hiccup was in Hull . Anyway I arrive around 09:39 and was onto the bird by 09:45. I say onto the bird! it was like looking for a wee beastie amongst the short scud along a large fence through two other fences. Now that always poses problems for the AF but jamming the lens against the fence rendered it practically invisible in the main. The midweek ploy sort of worked as the gathered ensemble was small, mind it was still early . They were still on the road!. Boy this thing was hard to follow small brown job moving like a mouse in the undergrowth was hard to keep with, but keep with it I did. and here some of the images.
 

Siberian AccentorSiberian Accentor
 

The first opportunity full on, as it moved across an opening.
 

Siberian AccentorSiberian Accentor
 

A three second pause, and people check before it was off again.
 

This went on for near an hour or more when it, for what ever reason lifted into the trees and every one lost sight of it, but it had very quietly gone out the back and moved to an area of moss covered car park behind the trees, and there I found it again, out in the open. reasonable light and it was happily feeding again. Not long before others joined me, alerted by the shutter going like crazy.
 

Siberian AccentorSiberian Accentor
 

At times even with the convertor off it was too darn close, but it was feeding very well and moving about just nice. I shall, maybe! add a couple more to the blog as I do them.
 

So another for tonight before I go to the land of nod.. Praps!
 

See you again I hope
 

Paul
 


 


 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) siberian accentor https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/10/i-dont-think-i-shall-do-the-sibe Fri, 21 Oct 2016 01:14:57 GMT
Unbelievable Autumn arrivals https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/10/unbelievable-autumn-arrivals The Autumn of 2016 has got to go down in the annuls of history, after a weak start to the October with fine weather predominatly from the west, it switched to Easterlies and Boom! it all kicked of, with vagrants turning up in Shetland, Bempton RSPB and Spurn , from Siberia and further afield. The Eastern King bird and the Siberian Accentor drawing crowds form all over the country. But not me cost of fuel prohibits me travelling to far mostly however I was lucky enough to Have a Nice Booted Warbler on a windy hill top in North Wales..

Booted WarblerBooted WarblerBooted Warbler on the Great Orm North Wales
 


 

Booted-warblerBooted-warbler
 

For a bird originating from Nepal and supposed to be wintering in India it shure looked in good condition, the tail feather remaining was the result in a supposed Kestrel attack?
 

Common Snipe, Grey Wagtail and Carrion Crow Common-snipe-in-sunCommon-snipe-in-sun
 

Grey-Wagtail-VPGrey-Wagtail-VP
 

Carrion crow VP ShropshireCarrion crow VP ShropshireCarrion crow
 

So being based in Shropshire at his time of year leaves you with not a lot, unless you come across a wayward Yellow Browed Warbler or other lost passerine, but so far little to nothing is making it's self visible mind it is a big county with not a lot of field birders.
 

So it was that out looking for things on the ceri ridgeway that a nice group of Crossbills were found sadly staying up high but he is one of them.
 

CrossbillCrossbill
 

Not a lot at the moment but the month goes on, hope to see you again.
 

Paul
 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) black booted warbler migration https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/10/unbelievable-autumn-arrivals Mon, 17 Oct 2016 17:13:04 GMT
Last minute panic ! tomorrow is the last day of September. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/9/last-minute-panic-tomorrow-is-the-last-day-of-september KingfisherCommon, Tern, Spotted, Sandpiper, Where on earth did September go? one minute its January and exciting at the prospect of a fantastic list of species, and suddenly September is close to going. So I better get the blog updated as to what on earth has been going on.
 

With September dragging the summer out a little longer and the migrants seemingly not wanting to get gone just yet, there have been a lot of long stayers with even last minute breeders still feeding young at the nest, And we are already seeing good numbers of winter visitors arriving all along the East coast and Redwings are being reported in Shropshire already, does this indicate a harsh winter abroad or is it a failure of some of the winters crops.
 

Yellow-browed Warbler numbers are not only earlyish! but are in good numbers indeed. Could we see another eruption of Waxwings spreading across the country fingers crossed.
 

So what to place here, as the last blog of September? lets have a butchers. A few last minute visitors at Venus Pool Shropshire. And elsewhere.
 


 

Common Redstart at Venus Pool.
 

Juvenile--RedsartJuvenile--Redsart
 

  Great-white Egret Leighton Moss.
 

Great-white-EgretGreat-white-Egret
 

  Curlew sorting his junk.
 

Curlew-VPCurlew-VP
 

  One of the ever (seemingly) present Kingfishers.
 

Kingfisher landingKingfisher landing
 

 A Great-white Egret at RSPB Conwy
 

Great-white EgretGreat-white Egret
 

 Common Tern juvenile VP
 


 

 Gargany at Conwy
 

GarganeyGarganey
 

   Pectoral Sandpiper Wood Lane Shropshire.
 

Pectoral-sandpiperPectoral-sandpiper
 

  And the wind changed direction and brought with it rain.
 

Redshank-feather-blowRedshank-feather-blow
 

  Redshank and the rain.
 

 
 

And-it-rainedAnd-it-rained
 

 Redshank fly by.
 

Redshank-Fli9ghtRedshank-Fli9ght
 

  Spotted Redshank.
 

Spooted-Redshank-4Spooted-Redshank-4
 

  Pink-footed Goose at Leighton Moss.
 

Pink-footed-Goose-1Pink-footed-Goose-1
 

  Pink-footed Goose Arriving at Leighton moss.
 

Pink-footed-Goose-aPink-footed-Goose-a
 

  Common Crane WWT Slimbridge.
 

crane flybycrane flyby
 

  Cute, inquisitive Juv. Ringed Plover
 

Curious-Ringed-PloverCurious-Ringed-Plover
 

  Female Atlantic Grey Seal at Cymlyn bay Anglsey.
 

Female-Atlantic-SealFemale-Atlantic-Seal
 

  Ringed Plover Cymlyn.
 

Ringed-Plover-CymlynRinged-Plover-Cymlyn
 

  Dunlin Cymlyn Bay.
 

Dunlin-CymlynDunlin-Cymlyn
 

  Bull Atlantic Grey seal.
 

Atlantic-grey-SealAtlantic-grey-Seal
 

  Ruff, WWT Slimbridge.
 

Mucky RuffMucky Ruff
 

  Green Sandpiper in preen mode.
 

Greensandpiper-preenGreensandpiper-preen
 

So there are just some of what was photographed over the last two weeks, some goodly birds, to list all those missed birds would bring tears to the eyes, still next time praps eh!
 

Bit too many photo's here but hey you got the lot cheers Paul
 


 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Common Crane Curlew Egret" Eurasion Garganey Kingfisher Pectoral Pink-footed Goose Plover Redshank Redstart Ringed Sandpiper migration"Great-white https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/9/last-minute-panic-tomorrow-is-the-last-day-of-september Fri, 30 Sep 2016 00:00:25 GMT
September already! October around the corner OMG! Ho Ho will be getting ready? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/8/septenber-already-october-around-the-corner-omg-ho-ho-will-be-getting-ready With Winter around the corner it is no surprise to see some colour changes taking place in the woods, subtle but it is starting. Smoke drifting through the trees a slight chill in the air heralding the coming of Autumn. New Fungus sprouting in many of the old logs left to rot amongst the undergrowth turn one over and smell the decay, musty and moist, bugs running for cover away from the light.

But thankfully another month of possible sunny if not damp weather till it really starts to take hold.

In the mean time the last public holiday has come and gone having had some warm temperatures and good light . if a little harsh at times.

So what did I get up to in the last holiday till Xmas? Well RSPB Conwy on the North Wales Coast was the place to be

and here a few of the why's. Sorry but Scones are apparently copyrighted?< LOL!!

GarganeyGarganey

Garganey

 

GarganeyGarganey

Garganey

Great-white EgretGreat-white Egret

Great-white EgretGreat-white Egret

Great-white Egret

Spotted RedshankSpotted Redshank Spotted RedshankSpotted Redshank

Spotted Redshank

Teal wing stretchTeal wing stretch Shy GarganeyShy Garganey

And with Teal and Garganey bringing up the rear, just goes to show how the Bank Holiday Weekend went, and a couple of shots of a Juvenile Common Tern from the local reserve.

Juvenile Common TernJuvenile Common Tern Juvenile Common TernJuvenile Common Tern

 

There you have it for me. a brilliant weekend was had and with some excellent RSPB Conwy Scones Mmmmm.

 

so see you the next time around eh!

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) gargany great-white egret spotted redshank https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/8/septenber-already-october-around-the-corner-omg-ho-ho-will-be-getting-ready Tue, 30 Aug 2016 21:06:30 GMT
Some time with the Kingfishers https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/8/some-time-with-the-kingfishers There is never a better time than when these electric blue rockets arrive and perform in front of you, So I decided to put together a group photographs showing there actions during my time at the local reserve.

So here you go.

KingfisherKingfisher

0

​1 KingfisherKingfisher

2 KingfisherKingfisher

3 KingfisherKingfisher

4 KingfisherKingfisher

​4a

5 KingfisherKingfisher

6

6a KingfisherKingfisher

​7 KingfisherKingfisher

Kingfisher landingKingfisher landing

8

​9 KF-HovverKF-Hovver Kingfisher-hovverKingfisher-hovver

10

​11

12

​13 Fish-SupperFish-Supper Battered-fishBattered-fish

14

KF-on-WillowherbKF-on-Willowherb

15

That's enough I think why not let me know which is your favourite, just drop your choice in the guestbook .

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Kingfisher.KF https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/8/some-time-with-the-kingfishers Thu, 25 Aug 2016 13:11:56 GMT
Peaks and troughs of an iffy! August in Shropshire. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/8/peaks-and-troughs-of-an-iffy-august-in-shropshire  Every year Birdwatchers and others reach the doldrums of August where as birds quietly moult into their pre-migration plumage, bit like me really!!

There are a lot of juvenile birds moving around the county at the moment Redstarts, Flycatchers and a whole gamut of others, Also many people switch to chasing Butterflies, Moths and all manner of subjects I normally go for Butterflies and Dragonflies, which have proven to be not so easy this year to catch up with .

But there are a lot of things starting to happen as more young birds start moving back to their winter quarters. So what on earth have I been upto well here you go . A set of juvenile birds.

 

 

Juv-Yellow-WagtailJuv-Yellow-Wagtail

 

grebe-fishgrebe-fish Curlew-VPCurlew-VP Juv-Little-ringed-PloverJuv-Little-ringed-Plover Grebe-strollGrebe-stroll Juvenile--RedsartJuvenile--Redsart

SO  juvenile, Yellow Wagtail, Little-ringed Plover, Common Redstart, Little Grebe, Curlew.

Great-white-EgretGreat-white-Egret Fluffed-upFluffed-up

 A Great-white Egret.

Greensandpiper-VPGreensandpiper-VP GreenshankGreenshank Greenshank-scratchGreenshank-scratch

Green sandpiper and Greenshank

The last gasp of the period at the local reserve was a very nice Hobby over.

Nothing overly exciting but interesting at least, I will be doing the Kingfisher Blog tomorrow for your delictation, and what a performer it was.

 

Cheers till the next time

Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Curlew Grebe Green Sandpiper Greenshank Hobby Little Little-ringed Plover Wagtail Yellow https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/8/peaks-and-troughs-of-an-iffy-august-in-shropshire Wed, 24 Aug 2016 15:21:35 GMT
A bottle of home made lemonade and a cheese sandwich https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/7/a-bottle-of-home-made-lemonade-and-a-cheese-sandwich It was what picnics were made of, simple fare but the taste of lemonade just brings the memories flooding back of summers all those years ago. At last the Leaf cutter Bee's are back again with a modest start, with more to follow I hope, The lavender is at last buzzing with honey bees  a beautiful noise as i sit in the garden typing this latest missive with a nice cold coffee, I forgot to drink it earlier DOH!.

Finally Summer arrived a little late but nice of it to arrive at all, and the number of people comlaining about the warmth! is incredible, enough moving on, it's been a mixed bag since the last Blog post so best got to it then don't you think.

So here goes.. Purple-Hairstreak-PH-16-1Purple-Hairstreak-PH-16-1

 Purple Hairstreak

Purple-Hairstrteak-PH-16-2Purple-Hairstrteak-PH-16-2

With the underwing, the normal view.

Large-Heath-ShropshireLarge-Heath-Shropshire

The Large Heath. A real cracker but hard to approach mostly.

Green-veined WhiteGreen-veined White

The Green Viened White.

KF-on-WillowherbKF-on-Willowherb

Such a lovely pose, for a change.

KF-HovverKF-Hovver

On the hunt as it hovvers above the water.

Long-tailed-TitsLong-tailed-Tits

Long-tailed Tits.

Just can't get enough of them.

That's your lot for the moment as fresh coffee demanded, as caffiene /blood levels are in need of correcting , so its of out for a search for Holly Blue a right cracker too..

All the best see you soon

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) long-tailed Tits Cross leaved Heather Drink Green Heath Heather Kingfisher Lemonade Moss Purple Rosebay Veined White Willowherb hairstreak large https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/7/a-bottle-of-home-made-lemonade-and-a-cheese-sandwich Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:36:06 GMT
Those balmy lazy days of Summer! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/6/those-balmy-lazy-days-of-summer I remember them well, as a child I was able to wonder the moors and cliffs around North Devon at will. The wild flower meadows were real not cultivated, haystacks were still attended by labourers, Insects, like Bees and others would never let there be silence and the honey retrieved was magnificent as was the local cream and fresh milk, it was not amazing it was stupendous.

Fishing from the now gone pier, and catching fish! by the bucket load. but! now with the factory ships parked at the entrance to the channel that's virtually gone now.

But all is not lost as they say, there is a fightback taking place with the re-wilding with all sorts of groups trying to save our flora and fauna.

Well I suppose I could go on  but I shall save it for now.

So what is new this time round? well some good finds on the Butterfly side and an occasional Hare to mention a couple of item so lets have a look then.

Silver-studded Blue.

Large-Skipper-BDLarge-Skipper-BD

Large Skipper

Wood WhiteWood White

Wood white.

Dark-green-Fritillary-2-BDDark-green-Fritillary-2-BD

Dark-green Fritillary.

Freshly-emergedFreshly-emerged

Final wrinkles getting ironed out.

Double-blueDouble-blue

Coupled Silver-studded Blues.

So there you go its a quicky this time around until the next batch of Butterflies emerge and are easier to find! sometimes. I find it strange that people that are breeding and spreading larvae are ridiculed for trying to save our butterflies ..

There you go more next time

Cheers

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bugs Heath Insects Lazy Moss Patterns Prees Purple Small Summer Whixall butterflies colours days hazy https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/6/those-balmy-lazy-days-of-summer Tue, 28 Jun 2016 19:48:21 GMT
Wind dancers and floaters. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/6/wind-dancers-and-floaters A few years ago I found myself, not that I had lost myself of course, at the RSPB reserve at Bempton Cliffs, just north of Flamborough in Yorkshire. An amazing place with cliffs dropping/rising up to 400 feet to/from the north sea and the rocks below. A scary place if you are not good with heights, in which case think seriously before you go. At that time virtually all of the birds had in the main left the cliffs and were heading out to the high seas. So a little quieter than it would be if it were the start of the breeding season.

Well it was decided to re-visit the reserve at a more favourable time and this year it all came together, well mostly! The birds were in full swing collecting nesting materials looking for nesting sites and trying to ensure they secured a mate. I said "Mostly" as is ever the case there is always a fly in the ointment, and my fly was the good old British weather. The day of arrival was blowing a real big wind with sea mist. rain and the temperature had dropped as well, once the tent was up and anchored against the wind it was a walk over the fields to the cliff edge to see just how bad things were. Well not to bad walking over but as you got near to the cliffs the wind was being forced up the cliff face creating a none to pleasant feeling about getting to close to the edge.

Birds were visible in the mist,  floating about on the wind and large rafts off shore as they perhaps awaited some more favourable conditions. Much similar to my considerations as well. However if you lay down and edged up to the edge, some amazing acrobatics could be observed as the birds used the up draft to glide and float up and down the cliff face, trying to control their flight with pretty wild manoeuvers indeed. The visibility was down to 100yds max so grabbing a few shots it was back to the flappy tent and a goodly cuppa of tea.

WindjammerWindjammer

Kittiwake floating.

The following morning, after a fitful night, the northerly was still blowing strong, pushing the sea mist into the shore, but as luck would have it there were some out of the wind places that afforded some nice opportunities for a few lovely shots. The wind was estimated at gusting at gale force nine.

Standing on some of the viewing platforms, which are built right on the edge, was cool as the birds just floated up the cliff face towards you, an experience.

Play-time-for-GannetsPlay-time-for-Gannets

Gannet.

The Gannets were back and forth to their selected places for gathering/plucking the grass for their nests from the cliff top. Some of the birds, notably the Razorbill had a few problems with stability.

Razorbill-oopsRazorbill-on the updraft

Razorbill

Does having a multi-coloured bill classify you as a clown? always thought it odd that the Puffin had attracting this term, I wonder what name it might have got with a black bill?

From-out-of-the-mistFrom-out-of-the-mist

Puffin-glidePuffin-glide

Puffin.

The Kittwake with its distinctive call and delicate features is, in my mind a candidate for best looking sea bird winner.

 

 

Kittiwake

By far the fastest flyer of the day and most difficult to grab a shot of was the.

GuilimotGuilimot

Guillimot. (Bridled?)

Sunday opened with the wind having changed a few degrees and the sea mist had cleared from the local area, leaving a bright and clear day for some nice photography.

Northern-Fulmar-BCNorthern-Fulmar-BC

Northern-Fulmar-BC1Northern-Fulmar-BC1

Northern Fulmar.

KittifloatKittifloat

​Play time!

to add some anthropomorphism to the proceedings.

Oh!-crap.Oh!-crap.

OH! Crap...

Sunday AM was brilliant.

 

Finally and as odd as it might seem the best bird from the weekend was the Tree Sparrow, they have more or less disappeared from Shropshire, sadly, but not at the Bempton RSPB reserve, mind you it only just beat the coffee on offer in the small shop, needs more Cake though.

TreesparrowTreesparrow

Tree Sparrow

It was, even with the bad weather a goodly weekend, and one which shall be repeated in the next few years, I hope.

Now Flamborough head is certainly worth a look even with the land erosion caused by the torrential rains.

So there you go, another blog completed and the next is in preparation already..

Cheers for now

Paul.

 

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bempton Camping Cliff Floaters Gannet Gliding Guillimot Kittiwake Mist North Puffin RSPB Razorbill Sea Tea Tent Tree Sparrow coffee grass northern Fulmar wind https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/6/wind-dancers-and-floaters Fri, 10 Jun 2016 05:51:05 GMT
The search for Fritillaries https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/6/the-search-for-fritillaries The turn in the weather has certainly produced a downturn in the number of Butterflies and Moths being found on the trips to find them, the particular species I was certainly hoping to come across was the Small Pearl-Bordered Fritillary. So it was off to the Wyre Forest with high hopes! It wasn't long before the old ticker skipped a beat, A Fritillary floating along the path side vegetation, so it was, stalk, move, stalk, boy they flighty at last a few shots were achieved of upper and lower wings as it fed. My heart sank as the identification confirmed it was the similar Pearl-bordered Fritillary, Don't get me wrong still a stunning butterfly and no mistake.

                                                                   Pearl-bordered Fritillary.

The day proved fruitless, but not being put off it was a return avec le bike the next available free day, the conditions started of poor but the forecast was to improve, Bike? oddly enough it was easier to cycle the path with the kit on your back. in reality just swapped sore feet for sore arse cheeks. The day warmed up nicely and again there were Fritillary bobbing along the margins just of the ground. Also a very fresh Broad-bodied Chaser was found basking in a ditch well away from the wind, it would sally forth grab a midge or small fly and return to its perch for its feast. Anyway I digress, back to the Frits, or lack of. As with the previous visit only the Pearl-bordered were found, even though that night, people were reporting them as being seen and photographed, sad face.

                                                                    Broad-bodied Chaser.

So what else was seen/heard ? Well, Brimstone, Small White, Small Heath, Speckled Yellow (moth) birds equalled Redstart, Spotted Flycatcher, Pied Flycatcher to name but a few. Well after two days of dipping out on the Small PBF it was decided to go for the Beautiful Marsh Fritillary in deepest darkest Wales at a well documented site for these beauties. You guessed it nada!, nowt!, nothing, well disappointed. However it was not a bust as Orchids were lovely, with other specialist bog plants, brilliant. Especially the locating of the Twayblade a green small colourless orchid amongst the grass so chuffed.

 

Birds nest OrchidBirds nest Orchid

                                          Birds-nest Orchid

Great-Butterfly-Orchid-(Platanthera-chlorantha)Great-Butterfly-Orchid-(Platanthera-chlorantha)

                                                       Great-butterfly Orchid

Twayblade-(Listera-ovata)-FlowersTwayblade-(Listera-ovata)-Flowers

                                                                      Twayblade

 

Violet-HelliborineViolet-Helliborine

                                                              Violet Helleborine

During the following week more Orchids were seen the Birds nest Orchid and a field of over 100 possible hybred Southern marsh and early purple Orchids. What's next? well a bit of time on the cliff tops with hundreds of Gannet and Puffins plus supporting creatures so here is hoping the tent does not leak and the weather stays within acceptable limits.

 

So return for the next update as soon as I can

Paul

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Birds nest Orchid Orchid Twayblade beautiful flower plants strange violet Helleborine https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/6/the-search-for-fritillaries Wed, 01 Jun 2016 22:56:27 GMT
Orange-tip Butterfly https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/5/orange-tip-butterfly Orange-tipOrange-tip

 Such beautiful colours. just not always easy to grab a shot of unless the female attract him in..

Now with tomorrow forecast to be really sunny it might be a hunt for one or two more nice butterflies locally..

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Orange tip Orange tip Butterfly https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/5/orange-tip-butterfly Mon, 23 May 2016 17:59:50 GMT
So many things to see and so little time to do it. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/5/so-many-things-to-see-and-so-little-time-to-do-it  Spring is a fantastic time of year with everything starting to show it's race to be ready for the summer, including the wildlife, migrants arriving carving out territories, this is a time of plenty going on, except sleep, up for first light, a hurried breakfast or picked up on route to arrive for the first rays of the sun and the fantastic dawn chorus. right through to sunset and after, before getting home, quickly checking the days shots and climbing into bed only too start again in a few hours, yawn.

 

Little-tern-VPLittle-tern-VP

Little Tern

Black-Ternn-undersideBlack-Ternn-underside Black-Tern-flyby-20160508Black-Tern-flyby-20160508

Black Tern

And so onto a few other sightings around and about.

Tree-Pipit-down-lowTree-Pipit-down-low

Tree Pipit

 

Black-Grouse-Shouting-againBlack-Grouse-Shouting-again

Black grouse

 

Sand-Martin-1Sand-Martin-1

Sand Martin

And with the warmer weather upon us it is time to dust of the Macro kit and try and capture some of the species missing from the galleries.

 

 

stating with a Large Red Damselfly and a four spotted chaser.

A short one this time round as so much to do and little time to do it!

See you soon.

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Artic Barn Bee Black Cap Cetti's Cley Common Fish Flycatcher Gannet Lesser Little NWT Norfolk Owl Redstart Snettisham Spring Terns Titchwell Whinchat coast migration whitethroat https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/5/so-many-things-to-see-and-so-little-time-to-do-it Fri, 20 May 2016 09:57:53 GMT
Out in the Wilds of Wales. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/5/out-in-the-wilds-of-wales  Nearly every year there is a trip that just has to be made around this time of year, to a very beautiful location up into the hills of Wales. The Elan valley is a very worthwhile place to either spend a day, or for the sightseeing, sit in the car with a flask of tea and admire the views. So did it fail to impress? NO! not a chance. tumbling streams open moor and a myriad of wildlife greets you as you crest the hill that takes you up through some of the most brilliant ancient woodlands.

So what's all the fuss about and why should it draw me back year after year?

 

Whinchat-20160508Whinchat-20160508

        Those raised eyebrows and crest really add character to this Whinchat, a bit of Ted Heath going on here I think.

Grey-Wagtail-callingGrey-Wagtail-calling

 

Grey-Wagtail-on-gorse-20160507Grey-Wagtail-on-gorse-20160507

This Grey Wagtail was really going through his repertoire as he persued the female up and down the stream leading her to the nest site on numerous occasions.

After spending a lot of time with these Wagtails it was a slow meander along the road and down past the lakes and dams to the visitor centre for obligatory coffee and cakes, and very nice it was too, sitting in the open watching Common Redstarts and Spotted Flycatchers with Pied Flycatchers flitting about and singing, in the woods on the opposite bank of the river.

Spotted-Flycatcher-20160508Spotted-Flycatcher-20160508 Spotted-Flycatcher-2016-5-6-aSpotted-Flycatcher-2016-5-6-a

 This Spotted Flycatcher was such a confiding little bird with a diminutive call but a lovely song, there were again a pair or more checking out nesting sites.

Pied FlycatcherPied Flycatcher

 Pied Flycatcher's were similarly active in the nest boxes coming and going, the female was doing all the fetching and carrying! The day ended with a stunning Common Redstart belting out his song.

 So a bit of a goodly day out and to be repeated probably next year.

cheers for now

Paul

 

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Flycatcher Redstart Whinchat migration https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/5/out-in-the-wilds-of-wales Fri, 13 May 2016 19:39:59 GMT
A few waders and a Water Rail. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/4/a-few-waders-and-a-water-rail Phew! nearly caught up with the backlog and have some nice bits and pieces, for Blog number 3 for April. A few days on the North Norfolk coast is always a great place to get the cobwebs blown away and have some good birds .

And the odd Scone or two with some good filtered coffee at the NWT place at Cley.

ok so I'll keep it short.

 

Blackwit-amd-AvocetBlackwit-amd-Avocet

 

Avocet-flightAvocet-flight

Early morning movement.

 

BlackwitBlackwit

Black-tailed-Godwit-flapBlack-tailed-Godwit-flap

The Jitters!

 

So many to choose from and so many could be used in the Blog so I shall save them for the next one.

Till then

Paul

Water Rail close inWater Rail close in

So love his shot..:-)

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) avocet black-tailed godwit water rail https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/4/a-few-waders-and-a-water-rail Mon, 18 Apr 2016 21:40:19 GMT
Mr Blue, and a Rouzel. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/4/mr-blue-and-a-rouzel Spoonbill, IberianSo today woke me with a nice blue sky creeping in from the East and temperatures rumoured to be in the balmy 14​​c, hmmm heard that before I think. So, I leapt out of bed! who am I kidding, crawled out more like in a one eyed stupor, Coffee to blood levels realigned and off out. For a change it was up to Naird lane, the local spot for Wheatear, Yellow Wagtails and sometimes one or more Ring Ouzels on migration.

Today the field was empty, apart from a few Wood pigeons until a large Black bird popped up on the fence post and it had the white band, a nice male and in good light, then just behind it a nice male Common Redstart so a double whammy for the morning. A quick look at Priorslee balancing lake provided nothing and the same at the Flash, there is always the chance of little Gull with the large number moving at the moment.

The results were minimal so a few from Whixall moss flood by the canal, taken the other day. The first is the blue/grey hybrid yellow wagtail a product of the Channel area around France and England, wonder if they will change the Taxonomy for this group?

The second shot needs no introduction, the Spoonbill again at Whixall.

Yellow-Wagtail-(Channel)Yellow-Wagtail-(Channel)

Spoonbill-WhixallSpoonbill-Whixall

Iberian-chiffchaff-2Iberian-chiffchaff-2

Finally a real crowd pleaser, reported around the 12th of April but possibly present since the 5th is the Iberian Chiffchaff, A goodly find as it is the first for the county so a well good find indeed. The call probably had a lot to do with the find it is most different from the standard Chiffy. The sun shone and the bird sang, just one thing, it stayed up in the top of the trees all morning, when I can figure how to upload the video I shall pop it in here.

So there you have it a brief, albeit good morning in the field.

As usual any comment and or suggestion, if legal and physically possible please in the guestbook or on the blog.

thanq

Paul

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black Flycatcher Iberian Spoonbill White channel chiffchaff granville migration sunshine telford wagtail whixall https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/4/mr-blue-and-a-rouzel Wed, 13 Apr 2016 20:23:01 GMT
April Showers and Highway robbery?? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/4/april-showers Well! it didn't take long for April and spring to arrive, bringing with it the customary rain showers and the herald of Spring, those brilliant displays of flowers everywhere you go. The local woods went mad with snow drops and Daffs brightening up the woodland walks. And of course the onset of the phenomenal annual migration, not withstanding the annual slaughter of millions of birds at the hands of the southern Europeans, shotgun for a nightingale, I mean Really? about as necessary as an emergency immersion suit in the desert.. k mini rant nearly over. The other bee in the bonnet is hide etiquette you know the sort of thing slamming doors, loud noise, talking so mate in next hide can hear you and uncontrolled children!! and of course throwing you pointy finger out the window to point at a kingfisher perched just outside the hide! Is it worth going on? no cause it will go on as long as people ignore it,, well enough is enough I say tell them to keep noise down or turn up the hearing aid, you know the rest.

So how was the week? it was really good, even if it was about a week too early for the main migration, but there was stuff aplenty to see and photograph around the reserves, apart from one which belongs to the NWT, Holme charges £4.25 per person to go round and £4.25 parking, I mean close on £15 quid?? for two peeps and car

NO WAY Jose, was I paying that it's extortion. Take a look at the place and you will see where I'm coming from. or is it a ploy to get people to join the NWT as it works out cheaper if you have regular monthly or weekly visits?

Ok I hear you, get to the piccies! okay dokay here you go with a selection the other goodly stuff is on the portfolio for your perusal.

Cetti's-WarblerCetti's Warbler Cetti's-WarblerCetti's Warbler

Cetti's

Barn-OwlBarn-Owl

Barn Owl

Ruff wing stretchRuff wing stretch

Ruff

Water Rail close inWater Rail close in

Water Rail

there you go that's the first batch of interesting shots for now, the rest will follow as soon as they are gone through ,,, OK! who groaned ;-)

as usual not enough time when its good light and not raining to spend time at the puter thingy.

 

So until the next Blog

keep the comments coming in on the guest book on the home page.

Cheers

Paul.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Barn Bee Black Black Cap Cetti's Cley Fish Flycatcher Gannet Lesser NWT Norfolk Owl Redstart Snettisham Spring Titchwell Whinchat coast migration whitethroat https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/4/april-showers Tue, 12 Apr 2016 20:45:02 GMT
Where did March go? and why do we hide Eggs and eat Rabbits at easter?? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/3/where-did-march-go "Don't forget to get your Flu jab" they said, so to keep the peace I duly rocked up at the jabbing room. Ouch! I am sure the jabber didn't like me??

WOW! modern medicine is a wonder and no mistake a few days later and yup! I got the Flu, and for the next three weeks and still not 100% right, its hanging on in there. What with that and the incessant rain and wind there was not a lot to drag me out even if I could muster the energy.

But enough was enough, gathering some get up and go I get up and went, not a lot going on but what there was, was v nice indeed.

what with the migration gathering in force and some nice, if a tad windy, days.

So what was very nice?

the following for example:

Common Chiffchaff

Little Grebe

Great-crested Grebe

Meadow Pipit

Black Grouse

Like I said some nice birds and light just for a change. Oh! and for any one reading this, still! Easter is a religious festival, so where did the Rabbits get in there? and what's with the Eggs ?..

Anyway that's it for now hope to see you next time round.

 

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Great-crested Grebe Little Grebe Shropshire White black chifffchaff migration open water sunny Days https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/3/where-did-march-go Wed, 30 Mar 2016 16:47:51 GMT
A fickle February https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/3/a-fickle-february Lets face it February really is a let down in terms of being a month to look forward to, it's shorter than any of the other months, sitting between Xmas and new year and the promise of Easter. It holds no promise and at best it will be either cold and wet or just plain miserable for all its 28 days not withstanding an attempt at being interesting by having and extra day every fourth year. I suppose the only thing you can say about February is that it delivers?
 

Ok depressive rumble over, as just for a change something interesting about February did actually happen, and it drew quitea crowd from around the country . The finding of not One but Two fine and dandy Water Pipit's A lighter and a Darker bird fantastic stuff the floods at whixall moss can and has produces some amazing things over the years. So at the risk of boring you have a couple of snaps..
 


 

Water PipitWater Pipit
 

I suppose it is in it self unremarkable, but it was a definite first for my Shropshire list,  SO! what else was there in for February?
 

Well how about a lovely and very bold as Brass Jack Snipe was plonking about in the mud, even Bobbing to the enjoyment of the on lookers brilliant and not having to move to see it perform. 
 

Jack-bobbingJack-bobbing
 

Jack-SnipeJack-Snipe
 

In amongst the other February ites were :
 

Black-Redstart-2Black-Redstart-2
 

Black Redstart..
 

Black-Redstart-3Black-Redstart-3
 

Grey-Wagtail-2Grey-Wagtail-2
 

And a very dapper Grey Wagtail.. Well how about that ? not to shabby for a miserable short arsed month it can still surprise
 


 

cheers
 


 

Paul
 


 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black Redstart Jack Snipe Mud Bobbing Floods Grey Wagtail Water Pipit Whixall https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/3/a-fickle-february Wed, 02 Mar 2016 16:14:26 GMT
Coastal sojurn. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/2/coastal-sojurn ​The journey to Portmadog was interesting. not only for the changeable scenery but the sudden band of snow encountered on the road on the downward side of the hills for about 400 meters! the reason for the trip was as usual to see some interesting species on the coast. And it was not disappointing at all as you will see.

Red-breasted MerganserRed-breasted Merganser

Red-breasted Merganser

​This outstanding male was with a female and two juveniles on the water situated on the non seaward side of the bridge by the Harbour rail station.

Red-breasted Merganser M&F

RBM female

It was a bit windy and cold as the wind whipped in of off the sea.

Great-Northern-DiverGreat-Northern-Diver ​#

Great-northern Diver

Great-northern DiverGreat-northern Diver

Great-northern Diver

At times this confiding individual was too close.

There were loads of supporting species from four little grebes staying close together and a long way out, sadly the Black-necked Grebe and Red-necked Grebe were not visible today although they were reported in the vicinity, next time perhaps?

So there you go a little from the weekend, it was a trip we enjoyed and which included some exciting moments there was for example three Great- northern Divers there to keep the fingers warm on the shutter release..

 

Well that's it for this entry into the blog for this time round, hoping to provide more as we progress into the Spring, and if things run as they have for the last few year more snow and ice rather than the bloody rain.

See you soon

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Diver Great-northern boats breasted crabs fish grebes harbour little merganser red https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/2/coastal-sojurn Mon, 08 Feb 2016 11:53:58 GMT
Whispering death! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/1/whispering-death With Saturday being awesome it looked like Sunday was going to be somewhat quieter, but how wrong can you be, Luton Meadows was the destination for a look at and hopefully some pictures of the reported Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus). And once again the thighs were being rubbed and rubbed hard as the Owl, after a fair wait performed most excellently.

Whispering deathWhispering deathConcentration

Here I stand .....Here I stand .....Waiting for a movement

Short-eared OwlShort-eared Owl

Whispering DeathWhispering Death

My best sideMy best side

Short-eared OwlShort-eared Owl

Having that the local river had flooded recently the ground was very boggy underfoot, which meant it was easy to identify where people had been gathering. That strategy eventually paid off. then the waiting began gradually a few more people arrived after the obligatory sleep in.

The bird was awesome I cant  say too much in exaltation, mind I have always enjoyed the flight of Owls.

Bonus birds had to be the fly over of the Woodcock and merlin, surprised everyone as it shot over and way :-(

so there it is

Comments apprecited

Cheers

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Asio Flammeus Owl catch eared flight fly mice short stick vole https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/1/whispering-death Tue, 26 Jan 2016 12:23:52 GMT
In the presence of a nice pair of Tits! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/1/in-the-presence-of-a-nice-pair-of-tits An odd title you might think ? I suppose it is really as the Penduline Tit is not so closely related to the true Tits, similarly the Long-tailed tit and bearded reedling. Now to have a pair of Adult males feeding just meters away was beyond a treat a deffinate thigh rubbing moment and to get the shots I wanted was well cool.

Penduline TitPenduline TitAn odd title as it's not in the tit family

 

Penduline tit Adult male.Penduline tit Adult male.Supurb little birds indeed

There was also one of its close relative moving amongst the same reed bed

the Long-tailed Tit

Long-tailed TitLong-tailed Tit Long-tailed TitLong-tailed Tit

An awesome day out in the presence of a pair of amazing little birds.

See you soon I hope

Cheers

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Penduline Tit White mace migration reeds https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/1/in-the-presence-of-a-nice-pair-of-tits Tue, 26 Jan 2016 11:41:12 GMT
Blog on Jockey, ?? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/1/blog-on-jockey At the end of 2015 a Hoopoe was found frequenting a landscaped quarry at Wall heath Kingswinford West midlands. It was of course a must, to go and see and photograph if possible, so joining the rest of the like minded people. It showed well but way to far of and seemed a bit skittish.

As the new year came closer the news was checked every day in the hope it would stay for the 1st of Jan start to the 2016 year list , yay! and it did and so it would have been rude not to go for it, as luck would have it some decent pictures were had and the list was well on its way to a good start.

 

HoopoeHoopoePhotographed at Wall heath Kingswinford

There was a lull in the next few weeks as rain and good supplies of food in the wild kept flocks to low levels not building as per previous years, so it was keep an eye on sightings and hit whatever was available, then out of nowhere A Common scoter was reported at a local glacial lake to the north of Shrewsbury, Colmere was on the cards for an ASAP visit. As usual the drive up was full of is it still there or has it moved on? the weather was bright and clear if not a little Brrr! at -2ish, at first scan it was found far out and was that a relief.

 

Common scoterCommon scoterPhotographed today 20th January 2016 Colemere Shropshire.

But after a little wait it slowly started moving toward the edge of the lake nearest to the boardwalk, chuffed to nuts as it came on closer and closer until it was at a good position for a picture or two!! Look at that beak sure designed for the main task of eating molluscs crabs etc.

 

CommonScoterCommonScoterAt Colmere in Shropshire 20th January 2016

 So a good time spent in the cold this morning.

A couple of photographs from earlier in the month from the local reserve.

 

Great-spottrd WoodpeckerGreat-spottrd WoodpeckerYou will come out!

you will come out!!

Classical NuthatchClassical Nuthatch

Classic Pose for the Nuthatch.

whats-that-whats-that-Obviously sen something?

And a stunning Jay..

 

So hope to see you again soon

 

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black Brown Colmere Duck Eurasian Heath Hoopoe Sea Shropshire Upupa epops Wall White Winter black glacial kingswinford mere midlands mussels water yellow https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2016/1/blog-on-jockey Wed, 20 Jan 2016 23:57:03 GMT
The Salmon run ! really. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/10/the-salmon-run-really I have over the years been lucky enough to watch the annual Salmon migration at various locations around the UK, but this year was probably the best yet. The start of this amazing spectacle was held in check due to low water levels in the river, the salmon were backing up in the deeper reaches awaiting the rain for a couple of weeks.

At last rain started to fill the tributaries and feeder streams across the county heralding the movement many had been waiting for.

Atlantic Salmon Atlantic Salmon Atlantic Salmon Atlantic Salmon Atlantic Salmon

 The Atlantic Salmon (salmo salar) running, is an excellent spectacal to be able to witness, people were cheering and clapping as each of the large fish made it up and over the weir typically British ! With the Salmon run and the Red deer rut coming to an end more or less, the next project has to be the Red squirrel.

So keep your eyes open

Paul

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Atlantic Fish River Salmo salar Salmon. Severn leaping migration run wier https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/10/the-salmon-run-really Wed, 28 Oct 2015 23:26:01 GMT
Lutra lutra on the Severn. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/10/lutra-lutra-on-the-severn As a child the tales of "Tarka" the Otter were enthralling to a lad that lived only a few miles from the burrows of north Devon, Mr Williamson had inspired me to check every piece of water in my locality, in later life I.e 18 or so I was able to sit with him at a local hostelry and chat on subjects of nature over a beer, I paid!, but so worth it for an impromptu interview thing. Since then I have taken every opportunity to observe these enigmatic creatures when ever I was fortunate to come across them.

This year has been exceptional with two or more sightings local to me here in Shropshire and both on the river Severn. They are now recorded in every English county, a triumph for the clean up of our rivers. Anyway here are a few photos of those seen in 2015.

 

Otter Male (Dog)Otter Male (Dog)some amazing time on the river severn and in the middle of town.

 Short but sweet , a few video clips were managed but they will wait till I have had chance to edit them so comments good or bad are as always appreciated just drop them into the guestbook or append to this blog.

I am sure there will be more to comes as the weekend is looking good for another go!

Cheers

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Dog Fish Male Otter River Severn lutra lutra https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/10/lutra-lutra-on-the-severn Fri, 09 Oct 2015 18:26:31 GMT
Talon Grappling over a morsel. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/9/talon-grappling-over-a-morsel Having confirmed that the sea birds had  moved off from the coastal area and I expect started their migration to the south Atlantic and the central American coasts, it was a change of plan and a visit to Nant yr Arian for a little Red kite action.

 

The chase for the smallest of scraps, did not take long before it was a full on battle.

 And it was from the outset, talons and beaks, with lots of screaming.

 

 Grappling for the tasty bit so small you cant even see it.

 There was no way it was going to be a free meal for the upper protagonist.

 

 The loser not looking to happy at the outcome.

 Bloomin poser!!  even though no tasty bit.

 How about that? bloody show offs

 So excitement over it was time for good coffee and a huge piece of fruit cake, it was nearly as big as me little sidekick!!,  boy that was yummy could even go back just for the cake, lets face it birding with no cake is just not on..

cheers

Paul

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bird of Prey Cake Coffee Grappling Kite Red Red kite Scavenger Scraps Sparrow Talons feeding fight forestry house meat survival welsh https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/9/talon-grappling-over-a-morsel Tue, 22 Sep 2015 17:37:28 GMT
Coastal Chaotics! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/9/coastal-chaotics  

On checking the weather for the following day, the radar showed rain moving through the intended location by 06:00. Well how odd it got it wrong.

I must admit that it was not raining on arrival. But standing on the seafront, it returned with a vengeance. I had the foresight to have waterproof trousers on. sadly the coat was in the car, Damn it! and it did not stop pelting it down for the next hour or more, looked like it was going to be a very wet day, no ice cream today then.

It was dark, due to the rain and the sea was no help in getting some early AM shots off. The target, Manx Shearwaters were returning to feed on the up tide, and return they did in their thousands, literally. Along with Gannets, terns, kittiwakes, Black backed Gulls and a lot of others. so what on earth went on, well here goes some of the action from the surf line.  

The spectacle was amazing, and to think all from the beach, the flock just kept getting closer. The whole thing lasted minutes before they moved off leaving the Gulls picking the leftovers up, then as the, I assume, "bait ball" moved they were all wheeling and diving again along the tide line quite breath taking, an estimated 20,000 plus performing for only a couple of observers. The rain keeping people away and of course the holidays being over it was quieter along the seafront. Things were hotting up as even the Shearwaters moved into the surf line with a vengeance, outstanding images were got and I was one happy bunny, 766 shots later, it was deemed that coffee and cake were in order at the café!!! but not so "no we don't take cards" was the response. No offer of "oh there is a cash point outside" not a "kiss my arse" or any help at all, found the cash point and left with out letting them have some, I assume,  needed cash. Hmmmm! Summer was cash laden then was it?? oh well info for the next visit sans rain I hope.

Beside, I always carry the makings for a brew or two, just to be on the safe side.

If you have any comments, please leave me some feedback so this Blog and Website can just keep getting better

Thank you for you visit..

 

Paul

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Beach Black Feeding Gannet Gull Herring Kittiwake Manx Shearwater Surf backed frenzy rain sandwich terns tide https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/9/coastal-chaotics Mon, 14 Sep 2015 01:23:44 GMT
Sun, Sea, Snake & Star https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/9/sun-sea-snake-star For a good number of years of looking at and for Fungi, I finally came eye to eye with what has until now been my nemesis, The Collared Earthstar (Geastrum Triplex) I suppose a fungus is a fungus, but for me this beauty is stunning, so enjoy.

And again a first for many years is this Grass snake (Natrix natrix) "In Blue" . Ok the in blue bit is obvious and the fact that this indicates it is soon to shed its skin,​ brilliant!, it does not look so glossy as it should, but that will change over the next couple of weeks as activity will allow the sloughing to take place.

 

A visit to any coastal area with an Estuary is always an exciting time as you never know just what you might see, and so it was with a trip to Ynylass north of Borth, Manx Shearwaters numbering thousands amazing, Gannets in their hundreds and lots of waders at your feet at high tide was such fun and so close. mostly put up by continued disturbance from darn people draggers, that had "slipped their leash" a crap and lame excuse from owners!! that really did not care that this is a reserve, which for passage migrants is an important stop over to feed up before the long haul home for winter.Any way here follows a few of the pictures from that visit. Not sure which I prefer? What do you think? Sanderling on the dodgeSanderling on the dodge Sandwich Tern. DunlinDunlin Ringed PloverRinged PloverGently does it

And the last one that I'm going to use in this blog Sanderling and Dunlin in flight. I shall include others in the portfolio for your pleasure.

​Bye for now. Sanderling and friendSanderling and friend

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Dunlin Earth Star Fungus Gannets Grasssnake Knot PLover Sanderling Sandpiper Sandwich Terns Waves sand sea shearwaters https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/9/sun-sea-snake-star Tue, 08 Sep 2015 15:05:29 GMT
Mesmerising. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/8/mesmerising

The more I stand and watch, the more! I stood and watched! and they just keep on working tirelessly, gathering Nectar required for the hive. Every Lavender flower was visited in turn and sometimes twice, mind you they did not stop on those that had the scent of the previous Bee's stinky feet on them, Every bright morning it was the same in they came ready for the plants over night refill, and once full of they went to unload and pass on the info to the rest. Buff Tails, Red Tails, Honey and Garden Bumble Bees, and one or two others I never got to identify. I was ignored and those that came to check out my colours, even the one which flew up the leg of my shorts , were not in the slightest aggressive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, what of the Leaf cutter's? well last year there were only four occupied tubes this year with three separate Bee's there are twelve tubes filled. So hopefully next spring I should see another set of tubes being erected for rent..

 

Cheers

 

Paul

 

 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bee Buff Hover Red Tail cutter lavander leaf tubes https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/8/mesmerising Thu, 27 Aug 2015 18:24:13 GMT
YAY! The return of the leaf Cutters! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/7/yay-the-return-of-the-leaf-cutters Last year 2014, was the first time in years of having a bee house! that it was used, in fact six young Bees emerged. I was not sure if they would re-use the tubes this year, so I was very pleased to find them stocking and sealing up the tubes once again. Now this provided me with another opportunity to improve on the photos of last year.
 

And so far this is what I have managed..
 


 


 

It was interesting to see a Magpie trying to empty the tubes to get the grubs last year and again this year un-stoppering them or grabbing at the adults as they flew in and out with pieces of leaves. That incidentally, form the first food for the grubs as they mature in the tubes, to emerge as adults at the appointed time.
 

So cheers for now.
 

Paul
 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Bee Cutter Grubs Leaf Rose Tubes https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/7/yay-the-return-of-the-leaf-cutters Mon, 13 Jul 2015 18:41:17 GMT
Butterfly and Dragonfly days. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/7/butterfly-and-dragonfly-days Its July and the other day summer re-appeared, all be it briefly! So with many species of butterfly in or entering their flight period it seemed to make sense to go and find some of the ones I needed to augment my library.
 


 

Dark green Fritillary.
 


 

Silver washed Fritillary
 


 

White Admiral.
 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Admiral Bordered Dark green Fritillary Fritillary Pearl White https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/7/butterfly-and-dragonfly-days Mon, 13 Jul 2015 18:16:28 GMT
Coastal Surprises https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/7/coastal-surprises For the first time since leaving Ilfracombe North Devon in 1968, I was to spend a good time at home, more than the odd few days here or there. It was good to be home and meet with old friends of forty years ago. Now having explored the area as a young man I knew where I wanted to go and do, but not this time, as I thought that a bit of sea watching from the pier could be an interesting distraction.
 

The first few Gannets were good to see as they passed to and fro on the Bristol channel and close enough for a few photographs, but when the count got to over 150 it was the largest passage I had ever seen at this point. What followed was brilliant a full passage of Manx Shearwaters, Razorbill, Guillemot, and local Northern Fulmar, Cormorant, Shag and the Local Peregrines sure kept me returning everyday for first light for a good length of time and some darn good coffee at the Aquarium.
 

So what came out of all this time ?
 

here you go.
 



A Northern Fulmar.
 


 


 

Northern Gannet.
 


 

Peregrine Falcon with lunch.
 

So a few of the more usual seaside species, however there are one or two surprises at time.
 

Three Great white Egrets.
 

These are one of those surprises, and certainly unusual.
 

so I can't wait for my next visit
 

Cheers
 

Paul. 
 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Egret Fulmar Gannet Great Peregrine White https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/7/coastal-surprises Mon, 13 Jul 2015 17:32:25 GMT
Limestone workings, climbers and grizzled skippers. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/5/limestone-workings-climbers-and-grizzeled-skippers The place name sounds very foreign, Welsh in fact, but it actually is inside the Shropshire border. The cliffs here are a magnet for climbers, school groups abseiling and all manner of other enthusiasts. For me it is the Butterflies and plants that attract me back each year as I hunt for the local wildlife. and this year was no exception. So here you go:
 


 

Dingy Skippers are small and not that easy to see, but arriving at the start of the flying period sure helps. The same applies to the Grizzled Skipper but a bit easier to see as it flits about the plants low down.
 

  Dingy Skipper. Dingy-Skipper-20150503Dingy-Skipper-20150503
 

 Grizzled Skipper. Grisseled-skipper-20150503Grisseled-skipper-20150503
Yes only two photographs to day for the Blog, even though there were lots taken but of common species which are already Blogged elsewhere. so do check back for the next Blog update and why not go for the RSS update so as not to miss them as they appear.

Cheers

 

Paul

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Butterflies Dingy Grizzled Skipper cliffs climbers plants https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/5/limestone-workings-climbers-and-grizzeled-skippers Thu, 14 May 2015 14:48:55 GMT
What a right little cracker. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/5/what-a-right-little-cracker Everyone knows the Greater-spotted Woodpecker, and some the middle-spotted and all hear about the Lesser-spotted pecker, but seeing the latter, as it flits about the woodland is not easy at all. Being only around the size of a Sparrow it is diminutive. The early part of the year around march is probably the best time to hear and or see them as the males call and drum as they look for a mate. Once done they go quiet in the main and seeing one really is a matter of luck and local knowledge. I had known the whereabouts of a breeding pair for a number of years, then there was a gap of a few years, until suddenly they had returned and breeding was well under way. The following shots were got at a distance so no excuses given..


 
Male gathering breakfast

 


 
Female

A couple of other species were got on this day, a vocal Common Whitethroat and the "Vulgar!" irascible Starling.
 

 

A bit of chatter with the rest of the family.

 

 


 

 

   He was so loud on this morning determined to find himself a new mate for the breeding season.
 

 

A really good morning out in the green and wild with a bit of sunshine, just makes you feel great.

 

cheers

 

Paul
 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Lesser Lesser-spotted Woodpecker Starling Woodpecker birds black female homes male nature small spotted white whitethroat wildlife wooden https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/5/what-a-right-little-cracker Wed, 13 May 2015 23:24:12 GMT
A cracking first for the county for a long time. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/5/a-cracking-first-for-the-county-for-a-long-time
 

Not since circa 2006 has a Black-necked Grebe been seen at the Venus Pool reserve near Shrewsbury
 

until Saturday the 2nd of May, when a pair of these Grebes appeared in full breeding plumage.

A fantastic sight to see these birds, even though they kept their distance from the gathered observers.

 

So here is the best I could get at great distance,

 





Black-necked GrebeBlack-necked Grebe
 

Black-necked Grebe.



 

 An early return in the morning proved fruitless with no sightings at all reported during the day,

so they must have continued their northern migration.

 

C'est la Vie

 

Paul
 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Black-necked Grebe Flycatcher Lesser Redstart Whinchat dipper migration osprey https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/5/a-cracking-first-for-the-county-for-a-long-time Sun, 03 May 2015 17:43:50 GMT
WOW! easterlies and sunshine fantastic https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/4/wow-easterlies-and-sunshine-fantastic Thursday, 23 April 2015

After what seems like an utter age of Westerly winds and rain, the migration seemed to have stalled here in Shropshire as we watched the reports from the east coast. Goodness me what a change, the winds swung to the east and the sun appeared for a good number of day and is, as I type this still nice warm and sunny out in the wild.

So and what did this change in the weather bring to us , well here you go...

Pied Flycatcher
 

Common Redstart
 

Whinchat
 

Lesser Whitethroat
 


 

 
Lesser Whitethroat
 

 
 

Osprey
 

Sadly not in Shropshire.
 

 
 
Yes I know not migrants but hey shoot me...

Rook
 


 

 
Wren
 

 
 
 

 

 
Dipper
 
 

A some what emotive subject, scientific research versus emotional query???
as you can see here we have a Dipper with both Silver and Gold awards for it's endeavours in existing in the British isles. Awards??? more like leg irons perhaps! so got a view or comment lets have it in the comments or mail lets see where it goes..

So a bit shorter than normal? no pontifimacations either..

Cheers
Paul
 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Flycatcher Lesser Redstart Whinchat dipper migration osprey rRook whitethroat wren https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/4/wow-easterlies-and-sunshine-fantastic Tue, 28 Apr 2015 21:58:49 GMT
John Denver said it, in what song? https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/4/john-denver-said-it-in-what-song So after what seemed like an eternity, there is at last some warmth and sunshine to warm your back as you sit and wait or stroll around the local reserve. A little oops nearly fell asleep on the bench moment did occur !!
 

 

And to top a lovely day, or bottom it perhaps? was the finding 10 yes that's right 10 Hares sitting feeding in a field in the sun,,, three blooming fields away and no stealthy approach, Damn it.

 

Any way a bit of what has been got since the last blog for you delectation.

 


 

Grey Hare (Lupus Timidous)

 


 

Med Gull

 


 
Get off.

 


 
Little -ringed Plover

 


 
Common Snipe

 


 
Broke back something!!!

 


 
Moorhen

 


 
Winter Wren

 

And at last I got the weed dance. YAY!

 

 




 

Harsh light KF.

 

So there you go a selection of the last two weeks, nothing out of the ordinary but all worth the effort, it is another up at 5:00am for another go at the Hares, the sun will be directly in my eyes for the first hour or so, but you got to do it aint ya!

 

So till then , Tara a bit jockey

 

Paul


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/4/john-denver-said-it-in-what-song Tue, 28 Apr 2015 21:29:25 GMT
Of Druids and Nuclear power https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/3/of-druids-and-nuclear-power There was a bit of trepidation as we set off for the Anglesey coast to see a reported Lapland Bunting, and it was not until close to 10:00 before it was reported as still being around, Phew! And what a little corker, on the West coast of the UK for a change.. So here goes,,

Lapland bunting

And Again.
 

 The next objective was the Red Squirrels in the Newborough forest, having tried on so many occasions before I was not hopeful. But it was to be a good day and they were in fine form and coat.

It's a long way up!
 


Beautiful Winter coat
 

      They were not tempted by extra nuts but hey you can't get everything your own way.



Jay stealing me nuts!
 


 
Male Stonechat
 
No not on Anglesey but at the local reserve Venus Pool Shropshire, a cracking little bird and so confiding as well, he was with three others scratting around in the stubble. so there you go another blog posted and as usual comments etc. are welcome back soon Peeps.
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) Anglesey Bunting Forrest Jay Lapland Newborough South Stack Stonechat red squirrel https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/3/of-druids-and-nuclear-power Mon, 16 Mar 2015 08:35:00 GMT
Fast & Furious ! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/3/fast-furious The 15th of February 2015, at 12:39 was good , the chance sighting in the distance of a Hen harrier was a bonus bird to the days mooch about at Venus Pool. there had been a report of one being sighted on the 8th of February in the same area. Nearly a month later it is still providing, for many their first Harrier sighting.

 

Low and fast

 

 

 

 

 

Hanging for breakfast chance.

 

 

Breakfast !

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sparrow hawk

 

 

 

 

 

 

And off

 

 

 

 Stonechat

 

 

 
Mountain Hare

Dove Stone is one of those places that really did not like me, 1:5 hours of walking up hill with photo kit on back and adding a touch of  "What am I doing up here?" winds gusting too quick and trying its best to stop a successful mission. Pah! well success was got as were some very nice pictures of the Hares, who were all white and surrounded by green and purple heather no wonder the confused looks!!

Next time then

Cheers Paul
 

 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) hare mountain hare mouontai https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/3/fast-furious Tue, 10 Mar 2015 11:51:00 GMT
Sink or Swim https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/2/sink-or-swim So in an attempt to record as much as possible I arrived early as the crowds were going to be huge, it was overcast and the wind dropped the temperature a lot, it did abate thankfully as it was cold only 3 degrees c. so here are a few of what was on offer.

Doormouse trying to keep dry


Climbing higher

Grey Heron
 
The only Hen Harrier of the day.

Jack Snipe

Merlin

Sprucing up.

A quick check.

Re-organise the feathers

Final check before the off.

Getting water logged.
Smaller floating areas.

Pink Footed Geese leaving the marsh.
 The people continued to grow in numbers, birders and the inquisitive alike spent time observing the tide rushing in over the marsh forcing the rodents to run or swim for safety only to hit the wall and hang on for life, the spectacle was soon over as the flood waters started to drop. A good tide and I will be sure to be there for the next spring tides.
 
Cheers
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/2/sink-or-swim Sun, 22 Feb 2015 09:13:00 GMT
A foggy day at the seaside and Brrr! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/2/a-foggy-day-at-seaside-and-brrr With the weather starting with thick fog set to lift around 09:00 it was a start at Burton Mere Cheshire arriving at just before reserve opening, to avoid the crowds and noisy birders!! for the first Bird of the day, the Long eared Owl.


A real corker but so difficult to photograph as it sat in the middle of a Hawthorn bush, in the shadows and blending in so beautifully these shots were not easy to get at all.

 
It was not possible to get physically closer so the Tele-convertor was fitted to the 600mm , which made things a wee bit more difficult to work with.
And so it was onwards to New Brighton for some Laughing Gull Shots,  it was a real pea souper here with visibility down to maybe thirty feet at times and with no prospect of it lifting.

But the Gull was pleasing the crowds not just having a kip. The last one I had managed to catch was some years ago at Porthmadog.




 
With the tide raising the
Turnstones had moved on to the pontoons and were enjoying the bread thrown for the Gulls.

 
And the Purple Sandpiper.
 
A good day out with some nice Birds had,
It was cold but nothing too bad if you could stay out of the wind.
Oh! Snow Buntings? well yes seen but this time no photographs were taken.
 
So with more from the other day to process, thanks for dropping in and we hope to see you again soon.
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/2/a-foggy-day-at-seaside-and-brrr Mon, 09 Feb 2015 00:33:00 GMT
The start of the year! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/1/ths-start-of-year
But as it was the first of the year some fresh air and hopefully some fine birds to be found in the county,  list!!! yes I know bit old hat but hey! was chased.. and one or two snaps to occupy the quiet moments taken, I am sure they are there just hiding!!!





Not a lot, but then again the county has been a bit slow for the time being. So hoping for some snow!!  I shall leave you with it for now out tomorrow so who knows what might find on a water near you..
Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2015/1/ths-start-of-year Sat, 17 Jan 2015 09:51:00 GMT
December already unbelievable https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/11/december-already-unbelievable






 
 
 So there you go a little of the November outings not a lot but some nice photos.
I am hoping to have a few more for you during December. from some exotic places !!
Cheers
Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/11/december-already-unbelievable Sun, 30 Nov 2014 15:08:00 GMT
At Last. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/10/at-last Probably the most famous of the fungi has got to be the old dwarf seat, or umbrella. Instantly identifiable by it white spotted red cap and white stalk the Fly Agaric, it attracts a lot of photographers fly's, slugs and a few other things..

So not to be left out! here are a few of the weekend captures.

The Fly agaric early capture
 
Allo! he lost he's spots
 
A little close up/
 
Another duo.
 
"Crumbs" theirs loads of them.
A spotless Agaric?
Its a bit of a guess but, I think that as the sheath breaks so as the fruit can grow to its full size the detached sheath shrinks to form the well known white clusters on the agarics red top. I wondered if as they were pushing up through the strands of grass these white clusters are rubbed of  or pushed to the bottom leaving this under ring of clusters. as per the shot above?
 
Flattening.
 

 
Slugged.




Breakfast!
 
Of the fungi found most were or had gone over. or passed their best So with this being the possible last decent fungi foraging weekend. Goodness knows what will be found but I am sure the warm moist conditions will be just right and of course those lovely Autumn colours are in full movement.
 
Cheers
 
Paul
 
 
 
 
 
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/10/at-last Fri, 31 Oct 2014 14:51:00 GMT
Moments of Mammilian delight https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/10/moments-of-mammilian-delight  The barking of the Fallow deer and the roaring of the Red deer are sounds of the ancient woodlands and is a spectacle not to be missed.

So a day out in, for example, Richmond park, Exmoor, and a other sites around the country is certainly worth the effort to see these magnificent beasts showing their metal for the hinds.

  
So with bags packed cameras cleaned and checked and the most important, flasks of hot water for coffee, it was off for an early arrival. The Fallow were barking and one or two red deer stags were roaring and or wallowing and parading festooned with odd bits of vegetation. A few photos from the day follow.

After a full on wallow
As much as he roared the hinds seemed to be ignoring him.

But still he kept up his patrolling.

A face mask of mud and weeds.


And now he looks so much more butch.

Bit of a parade.

Looking his best.

So he is off for the girls.

A little cool down for this fallow deer.

There are a number of pale examples .

The normal form.




Of this guy.
There are many other shots, but think that's enough for today, the place will get another visit very soon as I am sure the Red Deer Rut will be in full swing, I hope!
 
So why not get out and about? Cannock chase, Powis castle, Lym country park or even Attingham although not so easy at times, or Tatton park all have deer of both species and see what you can achieve. just don't approach to close and do not get between a Stag and his hinds.
 
Catch you later..
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/10/moments-of-mammilian-delight Mon, 20 Oct 2014 14:06:00 GMT
The Joy of something new! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/10/the-joy-of-something-new
A most exacting challenge was spotting a Cetti's Warbler low amongst the reeds, HA! more chance of meeting the moomins!! whilst the Passerine count was very low considering the local.

So lets have a look at what was got!


Purple Sandpiper
Black-tailed Godwit

High contrast Godwit

Male Gadwall

Little Grebe

Little Stint

Purple Sandpiper

High Contrast Redshank

Little Stint and worm



Bearded Tits, early am

Minsmere RSPB reserve, is a place I shall be returning to as often as is possible. In particular both April and May , at the hight of the migration or even a good winter visit .we shall see of course, so return soon.

Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/10/the-joy-of-something-new Thu, 09 Oct 2014 14:29:00 GMT
A few from the last few outings https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/9/a-few-from-last-few-outings


A huge Orange Spider

Making a Splash
 
I mean it go away
 
Brown Rat

Common Lizard

Common Lizard

Another Brown Rat
 
Common Darter

It don't look happy

A Garden Visitor

A little rest perhaps

Common Sandpiper
 
Greenshank

Red-necked Phallarope

Ruff at Woodlane

thanks for taking a peep.]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/9/a-few-from-last-few-outings Sun, 21 Sep 2014 16:44:00 GMT
The Fasination of Bees https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/8/the-beauty-of-bees The pollination of plants across the planet is surely one of the most fascinating biological events to happen. From evolution of flowers to proliferate their species to the social order of the insects that perform this ritual on a daily basis, all over the Planet. But really ask some one to mention an insect or two amongst this great feat, I am sure the Bee will be the one at the top. A look in  your garden will show you the delights of the humble Bee.
We had always had some Lavender in a pot but this year decided to replant and add a few more plants to a border, it took a while for things to settle back down but as soon as the flowers opened there they were Bees all over the place in greater number than had been seen before
And you would not believe just what they are capable of.
Buff-tailed Humble Bee
 
Common Carder Bee
 
Common Carder Bee


This Solitary Bee just keeps filling the tubes on a near daily basis, and watching the antics is so funny.



Honey Bee
 


Red-tailed Bee



White-tailed Bee


Iris crystals of necter



 
 
The Honey Bee is able to navigate using small magnetic crystal structures within the brain , it can communicate the direction and distance to food sources by performing what is termed as the Waggle dance, and can return to the same flower with un-nerving accuracy time after time.

Why not read a little more about bees and their amazing feats and social structure.

Until next time

Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/8/the-beauty-of-bees Tue, 12 Aug 2014 04:54:00 GMT
and it is still that time of year, Mmmmm! Sunshine. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/7/and-it-is-still-that-time-of-year-mmmmm
Large White

WallBrown Male



Clouded Yellow

Common Blue
 
Gatekeeper

Green Hairstreak

Orange tip

Peacock
 
Small Skipper

Not a lot but there are lots to choose from, some moths perhaps next time,, pretty ones?
 
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/7/and-it-is-still-that-time-of-year-mmmmm Thu, 10 Jul 2014 15:50:00 GMT
It is that time of year again ! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/7/it-is-that-time-of-year-again The target was the beautiful Silver-studded Blue, found at a local reserve in Shropshire one of the few in the midlands if not the only one.

The ova or eggs are laid on plants in close proximity to ants nests, where when in the larval stage they are ushered into the nest of the ants by the ants themselves, the pheromone given of by the Larva makes the ants react as if it were a grub of their own, once inside it will be tended as if it is one of their own.

An interesting factoid is that larvae in captivity become agitated if no ants are in attendance and can or will die? the males seen to emerge ahead of the females and lay in wait for the females to restart the sequence.


From Above

Unattended Female

And so it begins again



 

Small Heath

Five-spotted Burnet Moth

Garden-tiger Moth

Ringlet Feeding

Just Beautiful
 
Coupled
The life cycle of the Silver-studded Blue is not unique in the insect world some of the goings on are a fantastic read . And some are species specific in that certain hosts are wising up to the game!!! a bit like birds in particular the Cuckoo v Reed Warbler egg coloration, And in Africa one Cuckoo's call specifies what species nest it was brought up in, ensuring its mate also had the same upbringing giving them a much closer colour symmetry to the hosts eggs, weird or what?

Cheers for now.

Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/7/it-is-that-time-of-year-again Tue, 01 Jul 2014 02:35:00 GMT
It would have been rude not to have gone. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/6/it-would-have-been-rude-not-to-have-gone 
Buzzed


This pair were very insistant that they were not gong to leave the vicinity



Allowing for some very nice close encounters


Common Redstart
 




Spotted Flycatcher
Probably the last visit this year so as to not to disturb any thing  !! however that Whinchat keeps calling to me, so who knows!!

Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/6/it-would-have-been-rude-not-to-have-gone Tue, 24 Jun 2014 13:07:00 GMT
Just A simple day out! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/6/just-simple-day-out

















Well with the weather set to be fair for Sunday, with excitement, it will be out with a few targets in mind again.

Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/6/just-simple-day-out Fri, 20 Jun 2014 14:32:00 GMT
Another negative month https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/6/blog-post so why this, just a reminder I suppose of what could have been ??

 


 

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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/6/blog-post Tue, 03 Jun 2014 16:01:00 GMT
A Pleasant change indeed. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/5/a-pleasant-change-indeed


 
A cracker of a bird to have on the reserve along with a few Black-tailed Godwits, Little Ringed Plovers and a float over Peregrine.
Not another decent day for ages what a pain?
 
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/5/a-pleasant-change-indeed Mon, 12 May 2014 08:36:00 GMT
Wood Warblers at Clunton Coppice, and a catch up https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/5/wood-warblers-at-clunton-coppice-and There has not been that many days recently where I have been able to get out and about, so to speak, but it was time for the annual pilgrimage to According to the forestry commission "The worst managed wood" Clunton Coppice! It was an overcast breezy day, but the Wood Warblers were, as usual high in the canopy and singing well.
Wood Warbler
A few days previous it was a day trip to photograph what is fast becoming a rarity through out the country due to the loss of wetlands and suitable habitat, Ratty, incorrectly portrayed in the book and TV programs as a Rat, was in fact a lovable Watervole.
Watervole

Another brightly coloured bird which just seems to disappear amongst the undergrowth and foliage of spring, and another bird with an amazing song to be heard in early spring as they arrive back on territories throughout UK
Common Redstart
It seems to be a period of flitting about for my self as I try and catch up with more of the Spring activity
Black Grouse

Tree Pipit

To watch Tree Pipits gliding between perches is a sheer delight Whilst the song is quite weak amonst the others songsters, when heard it is beautiful.


As per usual , and so as not to bore you with picture after picture that's it, a few of this months captures so far. Hopefully there will a few more blogs this month weather permitting.

Cheers
Paul


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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/5/wood-warblers-at-clunton-coppice-and Thu, 08 May 2014 00:35:00 GMT
Well it's about darn time. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/4/well-its-about-darn-time So it stands to reason that you tend to go a bit mad with the shutter release then calm down as you realise what you are doing is just wasting the valuable moment. Anyway, this is what happens when you calm down and take things easy and wait and wait and wait!!!

Matching colours!! waiting for her up high.

A quick soar around the place.

An unusual side view for this Species, I had to run like hell!

A Juvenile Med Gull at Venus Pools Reserve, a lunch hour grab.
Not a lot for such a long time with nothing happening locally but its all kicking of now with the Common Redstart and Pied Flycatchers in at Bridges and Dipper,Nuthatch and loads of birds singing on territories.
So with hopefully a day or two off coming along it could be a good week!
We will see.

Paul


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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/4/well-its-about-darn-time Mon, 14 Apr 2014 14:06:00 GMT
Short days and slim pickings! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/1/short-days-and-slim-pickings
Hide? I don't think so

Out from the water for a different shot.

The pair of females.
Add a Little grebe to the mix.
A Red Grouse from last year as a reminder to self ,
to get out for the Lek this year.
And not to be out done the Black Grouse

So I hope to see you again over the next few months or more.

Paul.
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2014/1/short-days-and-slim-pickings Sat, 11 Jan 2014 11:59:00 GMT
A simple message for you all. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/12/a-simple-message-for-you-all


More in the new year.
Cheers
Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/12/a-simple-message-for-you-all Tue, 24 Dec 2013 10:44:00 GMT
October The Red Deer Rut? Nope!!! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/11/october-red-deer-rut-nope

 Many of the hinds were suckling Fawns from the previous year, and if he is lucky she will already be pregnant with this years coupling.

 The Roaring is one of the ways in which he advertises his strength to the hinds and other Stags


 Which of course can get some attention he might not last through, as all adult males are testing their metal in order to gain a good group of females. So if parallel walking does not scare off the rival it will result in a full on battle as they struggle for supremacy and the control of their rivals harem.

With the abundance off food and acorns, and the lack of frosts the Rut has been very sporadic to none starting through out a fair portion of UK. So no combat shots this year for me I,m afraid

There is always next year!!

Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/11/october-red-deer-rut-nope Sun, 10 Nov 2013 09:24:00 GMT
Saphire and Ochre, natural gems https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/9/saphire-and-ochre-natural-gems
Patience this time was not rewarded,



Now we know who ate all the fish, along with Egrets, Cormorants and Grey Herons.
A single Eurasian Curlew presented it self for a shot or two before calling as it lifted and left.

Slim pickings I know, but it is after all the transition period as summer migrants leave our shores and the Winter birds start to arrive from the North and Scandinavia and further afield.
We will soon be hunting Waxwings again I am sure, wonder if the Winter snows will arrive as per forecast of end of October ? could be a cold !
Cheers
Paul


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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/9/saphire-and-ochre-natural-gems Wed, 25 Sep 2013 17:15:00 GMT
A Summer spent well. https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/8/a-summer-spent-well
With such changeable but continuing warm weather, the local birding was slow at the best of times. With the trail cam not providing anything other than Mink and Fox a trip was on for the birding bus. Bempton Cliffs was the area of interest, a place I had often planned on visiting and for one reason or another never got to.

Keeping a wary eye on the goings on.

A gift for the female.

Bit of a brush up.
Damn it missed.






There at absolutely thousands on Gannets on this mainland colony, a good vantage point at 400 feet above the waves, located alongside one of the old radar station , now defunct, it is a spectacular place for a visit or two. I intend to return and do the other areas of interest in this area of the country soon.

Paul
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(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/8/a-summer-spent-well Thu, 29 Aug 2013 00:23:00 GMT
WHAT A WONDERFUL HOBBY ! https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/6/what-wonderful-hobby



 






A catch and eat in flight.

I certainly think that the Hobby is by far our most beautiful bird of prey arriving in the summer months, normally in time for the emergence of their main prey, the also beautiful Dragonfly.

Til next time I hope.
Paul]]>
(Paul-A-king-Photography) https://paul-a-king-photography.com/blog/2013/6/what-wonderful-hobby Mon, 17 Jun 2013 14:08:00 GMT