Friday, 5 August 2011

Close encounter of the Plover kind.

A late afternoon high-tide, nice weather and the urge to photograph some waders had me load my bike into the back of the car and head for Back-sands Scrape. When I arrived Steve Ray was already in the small hide and we had a pleasant time watching and clicking away for an hour or two.

Little Egrets are no longer a scarce bird but they are still photogenic.

I still haven't been able to see what they catch most of the time.

As usual the main group of Greenshanks spent their time asleep at the back of the pool, they seem to have some connection with Spoonbills, which normally do the same when you come across them.
One of the two Wood Sandpipers chose the area in front of the hide to feed.

This little hide must be the best place I've ever been to for photographing Wood Sands, and they are beautiful little waders.

A group of five Little Ringed Plovers dropped in and slowly worked their way round to the hide. For a good while they all fed actively.

Then it was bath time.

The a little fly round.

A good preen, making shore all the feathers are in good nick.

Then a good shuffle to get everything neatly in the right place.

And the finally a nice long snooze.

By this time the Wood Sandpiper was also enjoying a sleep.

Looking towards the Greenshanks I noticed a Wigeon standing up, I don't know if it had been there all along but I hadn't noticed it before.
There were still a good few Green Sandpipers around. I think this one was trying to bring up a pellet, but I never saw it arrive.

One of the Greenshanks had left the sleeping party and busily fed its way towards the hide.

It actively swished passed the Wood Sandpiper, but that didn't cause it to even open an eye.

There was a bit of a commotion amongst the gulls when this Black-headed Gull arrived with a decent sized fish. I didn't see then end of the story as the other gulls forced it to fly off to protect it's catch.
On the way out I'd flush a Hare, but it disappeared quickly. Going back I put up two from the side of the track and although they sped off they did stop to look back, which gave me a chance of a couple of record shots.
My final view was of one sitting up in the evening sunshine. I think they are terrific animals even if they bolted off like startled rabbits.


Susan said...

A very nice piece of photo-reportage. I love all those natural 'unposed' shots.

Marc Heath said...

A nice series of shots there Tony, nice one.