Wednesday, 10 July 2013

4th - 10th July 2013. A bit of a miscellany!

Despite the glorious weather recently we haven't always had the opportunity to walk and seek out the wildlife as often as we would have liked. Domestic jobs still have to be done, we had the small matter of a change of cars to accomodate and to be honest sometimes the energy levels have not been high!

On Thursday evening I had a short walk by the canal, not much was in evidence but the exercise was worthwhile as always...eventually I found a goldfinch perched on some barbed wire...

A little further on and a juvenile swallow was taking a rest..

Saturday saw the collection of our new vehicle and most of the day was spent driving around getting used to it!!

Sunday was a solo trip to Leighton Moss for me as the ladies enjoyed a shopping trip.

Tipping out of bed at 5.30am was oh so much fun, I was on the road at 6.30 and enjoyed a lovely journey on the quiet roads. Nearing Leighton Moss I saw a fox cub wandering by the side of the road, quietly stopping the car I began to reach under the passenger seat where my camera normally resides.
Packing most of my gear the night before I had put the camera in the boot! I settled on just watching the beautiful creature for as long as I could and it wasn't long before it disappeared into some nearby trees.

I got parked up at the visitor centre and began to explore...a lovely reed warbler appeared for just long enough for me to get a shot..

A red deer grazed by one of the ponds...

An elegant swan drifted by...

And a feisty wren told everything else just who was the boss !!

The heat was sweltering and I took regular breaks for re-hydration...the hides are like sweat boxes and a quiet place in the open but in shade was far better for cooling down.

As I sat this fearless rabbit approached and began to nibble the tall grasses..

Resuming my hide watch I had a visit from a marsh harrier..

Goldfinches fed on the thistle tops...

And a gorgeous four spotted chaser settled nearby..

One of the birds I always hope to see up close here is the stunning great crested grebe, today I was lucky and witnessed one on a successful hunt..

There were numerous damselflies and dragonflies in evidence, few settled in photographic range but I managed a decent shot of a common blue damsel..

Another great crested grebe..

And another marsh harrier..

I wandered off to another hide and got settled in just in time to witness an amazing sight as a cormorant captured a large eel and struggled to subdue it enough for it to devour....

The cormorant eventually did the weather on me, I was exhausted and decided it was time for home...the lens was uncapped once more when I spotted a chiffchaff in full voice though..

Home was gained safely and after a lateish start on Monday I headed up to Barden Moor for a short walk.

The playground of my childhood yields paths few others use, or even know about! Just a relaxing wander with no great photographic expectations but a red grouse always gets my attention..

A moth later identified as an Oak Eggum..

And a splendid curlew flew noisily past...

Wednesday saw me by the canal again..

A beautiful resting cygnet..

Juvenile swallows clinging together, certainly not for warmth!

A ringlet butterfly....

And the bird that never lets me down..grey heron!


  1. Brilliant photos Dave. Get one into the Countryfile calendar. Trouble is - which one?

  2. I do love the goldfinches, we have numerous sightings of them on our bird table. The cygnet and the young swallows were so lovely too, another wonderful collection of wildlife Dave

  3. The Oak Eggum? (Oak Eggar) moth should be referred to as an Oak/Northern Eggar as the two species are not really separable from photographs.