Photo Competition

A Wildlife Competition for members. Please click here for details. You have only until April 2nd to send in your picture!

Thursday, 30 April 2015

Spring Specials: Birds and Butterflies

Spring is well under way, but at times it feels like winter is still holding on. Though the weather has been changable the sights and sounds down on the reserve have been a delight to witness. Birds are still making use of the bird feeding area. Male Chaffinches and Bullfinches are looking at their best. On warm days we are seeing a number of Butterflies which reminds me that summer is on its way and its nearly time to get the Macro out in ernest.
                                      Male Blackcaps are singing for all they are worth
                             Bluetits are still coming down foir seeds at the Viewing Station
                                   Male Chaffinches are looking fantastic at the moment
                                  This Dunnock was showing well down by the river
                 Male reedbunting. Topping up with seed before he heads back to the lagoon
     The Jays are still coming down for peanuts. Perhaps the larder was empty for this one.
                                    Robin down by the river path in late evening sun
                                        Female Goosander in evening sunlight on the river
                                   One of two males that were there that evening
                                          They seem to be enjoying each others company
                                                 But, it was the male that drove her off.
                                                One of our splendid male Bullfinches
                                                               Goldfinch on Tag Loop
                                             Goldfinch in the Hawthorns bushes by the weir
                                                            Chiff-Chaff on Tag Loop
               Jay wondering when someone is going to bring down some more peanuts
                                               Kestrel hunting on the reserve
                                                    A joy to see not one but two

                                                 Small White Butterfly
                                                                   Peacock Butterfly
                                                   Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Regulars & visitors!

All the local birds are well underway with nesting & pairing, & plenty of visitors are doing the same.
Dippers are noticeable by not many sightings - probably due to Mrs on eggs & Mr not needing to be so busy yet! but he's still around if you look carefully. Kingfishers are doing the same thing & very quiet. Warblers - well they seem to be everywhere, Blackcap sightings & territories galore, Willow Warblers & Chiffchaff's are similar. A Garden Warbler, maybe setting up a territory too, hope he finds a lady friend, I heard a couple of Whitethroats, but alas, not seen much of them yet, but others have. G.S. Woodpeckers are busy too with a couple of nest sites seemingly underway, & a couple of Common Sandpiper were hanging around the riverbank recently.
At the feeders - well the birds are still coming, probably getting some fast food to keep their energy up with all the hard work they will be doing. Bullfinches galore still, possibly the last week or so now & they will disappear to go nest as the bramble & leaf growth is about to explode, just how they like it.
Myself & Allan were trying hard to capture the Garden warbler on Sat, & failed miserably but this Kestrel performed nicely to cheer us up.

Later a second one joined it & they wandered off, so locally this looks good for a possible pair.
 Chaffinches grabbing some fast food! males are looking "well smart" now.
Jays are surprisingly still begging for some nuts! This is the look I get if I don't fill their stump fast enough!
Searching for some!
"Please sir can I have some more",I'm getting informed the holes empty!
What's wrong with THIS picture?
& just for comparison -
 Somebody has had a pretty close shave, maybe with a Sparrow hawk!
Bullfinch male,Look at his colours stand out in the sun!
A couple of Reed Buntings are Clearly Lady free & still around.
Not forgetting the "Bread & butter" species:
 Coal Tit
 Blue Tit
Great Tit
Just for fun! Here's a "Willow-Chiff" as I was taught as a young Lad.
This one should be a Chiffchaff! as we had it belting one out just a few feet away previous to the snap!  Three other witnesses to back me up too. lol.
Keep your eyes peeled & your ears open - It's building up nicely.

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Pics of Cromwell Birds

             Just a few pics taken lately.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Birds and Butterflies and the return of the Vole

                                       Peacock Butterfly warming itself on the gravel path at tag loop
                                             Chiff Chaff feeding in the branches at Tag Loop
                                             Bullfinch(M) looking his best for his mate
                          Male Chaffinches are looking their best at this time of the year
                     Great Tits seem to be all around making their distinctive sounds

                                              Our little Coal Tits are as agile as ever
A female Chaffinche may not be as attactive as the male but she's preparing to bring in the next generation. That makes her special
 Our Male Reed  Buntings are getting bolder, coming onto the logs on a regular basis.
 Robins are singing all over the reserve, declaring to other Robins, keep out this is mine. This one certainly looks as if he's in charge around the viewing station (At least as other Robins go)
    Stock Doves have been increasingly getting closer. More competition for the peanuts
 This Magpie couldn't wait until we had all gone before he came down. He looks disappointed.

                                    This Wren was busy getting ready to for house building.
 We have been wondering about the voles. Well they are back and it is great to see them around.
                          First Male Orange Tip I'd seen and the first I've photographed this year.
                                                Glad it chose to rest while the others were talking
                     My first Comma of the year warming itself on the gravel path at Tag Loop