Monday, 22 April 2013

Saturday 20th April - Godrevy - Tehidy - Hells Mouth

Great day out photography, starting early and heading over to Godrevy in search for any seals that had come up onto the surfers beach, unfortunately early wasn't early enough as the surfers were already there and the beach and sea was full of them. Which instantly made me want to go in and join!!

As I made my way along the coast at Godrevy I spotted two small birds fly up, on closer inspection I realized they were a pair of Meadow Pipits (Anthus pratensis), the problem was that their camouflage was so good that the only time I could find them was if they flew up and land quite close, their feather pattern matched the grass perfectly meaning quite often I'd be walking around trying to find them then out of no where one would fly up from right next to me.

Meadow Pipits - Anthus pratensis

After spending some time photographing the Meadow Pipits I made my way further along the coast, spotting some Rock Pipits (Anthus petrosus) and Sand Martins (Riparia riparia) on the way. Before reaching the point facing out to the lighthouse, as I sat down watching the Herring Gulls (Larus argentatus) fly past I noticed a Grey Seal (Halichoerus grypus) pop up down below in the water and then another appeared, just looking straight up at me on top of the cliff.  From there I made my way past the bay, which is full of them and back down back to my car.

Grey Seal - Halichoerus grypus

From Godrevy I headed to Tehidy, having never been there before I didn't know what to expect, the first thing I did notice from the moment I walked out of my car was a set of large nests up in the trees, then as I get closer I started to spot a number of Rooks (Corvus frugilegus) until there must have been on in nearly every tree and on the floor. It was as if I had stepped into an eerie horror film with them all looking down at me.

Rooks - Corvus frugilegus

As I made my way around the first lake from the south car park I moved into a wooded area and up a hill towards the coast, on the way passing through some fields where I spotted a pair of Whearears (Oenanthe)  perched on the some fence posts.

Whearears - Oenanthe

From the fields I walked down to the cliffs and to some amazing views, and to top it off the Wrens (Troglodytidae) were singing on the tops of the gorse. As I made my way along the path to the North Car Park for Tehidy, I noticed a pair of Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola) following me along the cliffs, with the sea behind and perched lovely on post, until I come anywhere close and they fly off.

Stonechat - Saxicola rubicola

Making my way back into the country park and back down the hill this time through the woods, I headed over the Oak Woods where I found a pair of Jays collected and eating peanuts that were scattered on the floor.

As I made my way back to the car I saw a fellow photographer and bird watcher (standing out with a huge Canon 600mm Lens) as went over to see if he had seen anything of interest, as we started to talk he suggested I headed over the to  Hells Mouth and gave me directions to it. With information of there being Kestrels (Falco tinnunculus) and a chance of a Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) I headed off.

On arrival I headed straight to the cliffs and started to spotted a number of Herring Gulls (Larus argentatus) nesting on the cliff and some Fulmars (Fulmarus) flying around, but no Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) as I made my way along the edge I started to wonder if he meant the fields behind, then suddenly one flies over and dives over the edge of the cliff, I quickly make my way over and look over the edge expecting it to be miles away but there it was just sat there looking back up at me. What a sight, I only mange to capture 2 image before she left as I was stunned for a few seconds from being so close to a wild kestrel (Falco tinnunculus).

Kestrels - Falco tinnunculus

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Friday 19th April - Swanpool - Kennall Vale - Loe Bar

Sorry for the delay in the post I have been busy getting everything sorted on my new Imac which I got on Tuesday so all my files are still all over the place.

Starting off the day at Swanpool, in search of any more signs of Spring being just around the corner at last. From my visit the previous day I noticed that the coots had built a nest and laid a few eggs in a few locations, today I say even more, in the bright sun they stood out and I counted 4 coots nest and also a Swan Nest which I have no idea how I missed yesterday, its not the smallest thing around.

Mut Swans Nest

Coots Nest

Also I spotted a Jay flying through the trees collect twigs for his nest although it seemed to be taking it into someone back garden so I couldn't see the pairs progress. Another thing to note was the ants which covered some of the plants, clearly collecting food for there colony.

Jay -Garrulus glandarius

After my visit to Swanpool I headed to Kennall Vale to see how Spring was taking hold there, to my surprise it looked almost the same as my previous visit the only real change I noted was the branches I cut down on my volunteer morning a few months ago had started to break down. Although not much was happening at Kennall Vale I had one last place to visit, Loe Bar. Having not been there since our course trip last year, so things were bound to have changed.

After parking up in the car park I headed over the the boating lake that is siuated next to the car park, most of the lake itself was full of Herring Gulls, although at the top end by the cafe was a group of Swans, at first I belived them all to be Mute Swans ( Cygnus olor ) but as I got closer I noticed that one had a yellow bill, I thought I was going mad but after comparing it to the other Swans I realised it was a Whooper Swan (Cygnus cygnus), my first wild Whooper Swan. After a minute I started to wonder why it was there normal they come down over winter and are gone by early Feburay, so I posted on Facebook to see if anyone knew and it turned out this Swan had been there all winter and didnt seem to want to leave, it will be interested to re-visit the lake and see if it ever does.

Whooper Swan - Cygnus cygnus

After the walk around the lake I made my way over to Loe Bar itself, where it was confronted by a number of lovely scenes of the sun shining, the sky bright blue and the green on the trees starting to show.

As I made my way around through the trees I started to hear the birds calling inpartuclar the Wrens which were singing their hearts out in search of a mate, one was so busy singing that he didnt mind me getting close. 

Wren - Troglodytidae

Another sign of spring was the Greater Stitchwort (Stellaria holostea) which covered the ground.

Greater Stitchwort - Stellaria holostea

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Today - Friday 19th April

Great day out photographing , starting at Swanpool and making my way to Kennall vale before finishing at Loe Bar.

Although I have been unable to update the blog properly with image I will tomorrow but the highlight of the day started with the Jay collecting nest material early in the morning then the scenery at Kennall vale and then to top the whole day off the whooping Swan at loe bar along with the wrens singing in all the trees.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Here Comes Spring

My first visit back to Swanpool after the Easter break, up until today I hadn't seen any signs of spring, but today was the day. Even when I was pulling up in my car I noticed that everything was a lot greener then my previous visit. Flowers were appearing and leaves were growing on the trees, over the next few weeks I will be monitoring this change in seasons and how the wildlife changes as well.

Not only had the plants had enough of winter so had the birds, if anyone remembers I mentioned before the coots fighting over territory and building nest and here is the result......

2 small eggs just itching  to hatch and 2 new lives will join this world and open their eyes for the first time. Sadly this is a moment of great happiness but also sadness because instead of being welcomed by a clean nest and pollution free environment their first sight will be the little that has been collected into there nest and has been caught up in the reeds around them.

Would you like to be born surround by litter ??

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Pulborough - Coldwaltham Fields - Arundel

Spent yesterday out photographing, starting at Pulborough with Dad looking for the Adder, what a wonderful day to have off work. We headed around the reserve to the lower area in search of 1 and within a few minutes I spotted a black thing by the path. We slowly moved closer as not to disturb it and started snapping away while it basked in the sun.

Adder - Vipera berus

Adder - Vipera berus

After we had taken out shots we headed back to the visitors center, on the way seeing some wigeon and rabbits.

Wigeon - Anas penelope

Rabbit -Leporidae

Once we got back to the car Dad went home and I carried on to Arundel, stopping off at Coldwaltham fields in search for the barn owls, sadly they weren't around and so I got back in the car and carried on.

Upon arrival to Arundel I made my way through the hides and but there was much around due to the large number of people visiting the center today. Although I did find some Mallard ducklings which were nice as them and the Adder were my first signs of spring.

Mallard Ducklings - Anas platyrhynchos