Monday, 30 April 2012


I love yellowhammers. Six singing males around my local patch and at the moment, they just sit up and let you photograph them at this time of year.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Blashford Lakes

Last week my work took me back towards Hampshire so a couple of hours at Blashford Lakes helped fill in some time between jobs. The Lakes had been quite busy up until the day before, little gull, water pipit, little-ringed plover and osprey all appeared on the notice board. Not on the day I visited though. A few noisy redshank and a common sandpiper were the only waders of note on Iblsey Water, a pair of goldeneye, 5 common tern and 3 greylag finished it off.

Yellow-legged Herring Gull

Photographed recently on the Isle-of-Wight, this appears to be a normal argenteus type Herring Gull but with distinctly yellow washed legs. I believe they do occur in small percentages of the population along the south coast but this is the first I've come across.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Cirl Buntings, Devon

Going to see my accountant down in Devon isn't all bad. A quick detour to a regular Cirl Bunting site proved worthwhile with two pairs feeding quite close on the ground. Here are a few shots of the male birds:

Lovely birds and helped make up for the fact that I was missing the Black-winged Stilt at Abbotsbury.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Little Dipper!

A trip down to South Milton Ley over the Easter weekend proved uneventful. The Little Bunting, which had been happily feeding up to two minutes before we arrived, disappeared not to be seen again until late afternoon. By that time we'd moved on to try and catch up with a pair of Garganey on Slapton Ley - no joy there either!  On to Yarner Wood for pied flycatcher (yes!) and a fine bunch of Mandarin duck by the car park hide too.

Finally back to Budleigh Salterton, last stop of the day to try and see the purple heron that had been showing on and off for the last few days. We were directed to a ditch where it had vanished an hour ago...things were not looking good!  We finally gave up and headed back to the car when a final glance across the field produced...

a very distant purple heron in the murky light skulking along the edge of the ditch.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Med Gulls - Isle of Wight

A week's holiday out of the region in the Isle-of-Wight before Easter brought my first swallows and this stunning adult Mediterranean Gull at Ryde.

Not to mention one or two common locals as well...