Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Kestrel made it worth the effort

Female Kestrel, looking a bit wet, there had been a heavy dew so maybe it got in this state through hunting.
I was awake early this morning, so as soon as the sun lit the bedroom up I decided to make the effort and head off for a walk around the patch, (even before breakfast !!). I parked the car on the edge of the industrial estate and headed on to Thacka beck reserve, the time would be 5-45. I had just started along the path when I met birder John (I call him birder John to distinguish him from other Johns I have in my phone book). Anyway we stood chatting for a while as you do and swapping notes, John has been telling me about a survey he is doing on the gulls that are breeding on the factory roofs (just for his own interest at the moment) Nests number into the late twenties with Lesser Black-backed Gull being the prominent nester.
   After a few mins. we parted company and I headed onto the reserve, I hadn't gone very far when my phone rang, it was John, "I forgot to mention" says He  "there is a Kestrel sitting on a post on your right as you head for the railway", and sure enough there was. The only trouble was the sun was against me and I had to pass the bird to get in the right position for pics. Fortunately I managed to do so without disturbing it and got a few pics

Gorgeous bird, an hour later and the place would be teeming with joggers and dog walkers and it would have gone, so worth the effort.

Just above the Kestrel was these 3 mates chilling out and having an early morning groom.

Woodpigeons making good use of the power line.
Next a walk along the Hawthorns didn't produce a great deal, but it was nice to see this

Dunnock (hedge sparrow)

and this

 Both enjoying the early morning sun.
        We have also got the Longhorn cattle back on the patch, all part of the Eco management.

Long horns, there are 4 altogether, but one was being uncooperative.
There is an abundance of wild flowers out at the moment, and this one typifies Summer for me,

The Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)

This is one of the lucky young Mallard on the patch , this and 4 of its mates survived the marauding Gulls.

Just off patch this Hare was enjoying an early morning breakfast, and making me think it was about time I had mine, so set off back to the car.
Near the area where I had parked the car there are a good number of the gulls mentioned earlier, so decided to get some pics of them.
Now I don't know whether the gulls thought the lens was a gun, or maybe it was just the fact that a lot of the nests have young, but as soon as I pointed the lens to the sky I started being attacked.

Lesser Black-backed Gull, swerving off at the last minute.

They can be quite intimidating.

Lesser Black-backed Gull

And on a lighter note---

Hot air balloon taking advantage of great ballooning conditions, and an advert for Richard Branson.


  1. Looks like this early morning walk was well worth it! So many lovely sightings and great photos!!

    1. Thanks once again Tammy, we don't get many morning like that so they have to be made the most of when they happen.
      Also had a text from birder John this morning Red Deer on the reserve. As far as we know this is a first for the area, we have had Roe Deer for a while, so hopefully I may get lucky and catch it with my lens.
      Take care Gordon.


A big thank you to everyone for looking in and leaving their comments, much appreciated, Gordon.