Saturday, 24 October 2009

A Dipper in Lancs

Away from the excitement of Pallas's Warbler and Siberian Stonechat at Bockhill ( I was warned that October was not a good time to be away!) I took a walk along the River Ribble at Clitheroe this afternoon, once the rain had abated.

This picturesque narrow bridge crosses the river Ribble not far from Pete and Nina's house.

It's not such a picture when you look in the distance, a cement works breaks the skyline about a mile away, a bit like north Kent!

Along the path to the bridge I found this Red Admiral sunning itself on the fallen leaves during the short time the sun was really warm.

At the start of the foot path there were several notices about new fishing permits for the season, but i don't suppose that this grey heron was too bothered with that.

Neither, would this female or eclipsed male Goosander. I did wonder if it was a juvenile but I think the dark face rules that option out.

The extent of the white in the wing might mean that it's an eclipsed male, but I not sure. The remission in the weather didn't last long and the light faded fast while I was watching this bird.

Near the next bridge at West Bradford I could hear a Dipper singing, above the sound of the water. It seems a strange time of year for one to be in song. I finally saw it tucked under the bank on the other side of the river, remarkable how it's sound carries across the water.

I saw two fly up the river and one disappear into a small stream. A footpath crossed this stream on a small wooden bridge and I slowly got to the middle and looked up stream. This Dipper was in the middle. It was so dark that at ISO1600 I was at 1/13 sec! SO this hand held 400mm shot is better than I expected.

I managed to get a bit closer and took one shot with some fill in flash, but that was enough for the Dipper and it vanished round a bend in the stream.


dhatton said...

I'm off to look at St. Margaret's while you're around my new patch in NE Lancs, Tony - birding balance, I guess! I've had dippers in Accrington town centre before but it's hardly worth going there just to have a look...

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Hope our grotty weather hasn't put you off birding up here in our superb patch

Best wishes