Sanlucar waders

There are some rocky areas a little walk along from where we are staying and at low tide they are exposed and a small selection of waders turn up.  So today I sat on one of the rocks for  a couple of hours and photographed what decided I was not too great a  threat and thus approached a bit closer.

First was a Bar-tailed Godwit, probing in the sand for a juicy worm. You can see the bars on it tail.

The commonest birds there are Turnstones and I did get a shot of one turning a stone.

Second commonest are Sanderlings, delightful little birds, always on the move.

There were some Plovers, mostly Kentish but also some Little Ringed Plovers.

I also saw in the distance, Little Egret, Cormorant, Yellow Legged Gull, Dunlin and probably a Whimbrel but it might have been a Curlew. .

And this is the local beach, the rocky bit is behind me…. Not many people about, just the occasional dog walker or couple taking a stroll.  No sunbathers this year!



Sanlucar de Barrameda birds

Poor weather this year in Andalucia so I have been taking a few bird photos locally near our flat, even from the terrace.  There are potentially several different Hirudines in this area at this time. There are some that even pop over from N Africa, though with the weather the way it is I can’t think why.

I snapped away and got lots of blanks but did get a few which have allowed me to identify this one as a Crag Martin…. the clincher is the ‘windows’ in the tail feathers which only show when it spreads its tail. They are not gaps but white coloured feathers.

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There is a bit of a scrubby area down from our flat and it holds some good birds. I saw a Hoopoe and always hear Cetti’s Warbler, there are lots of Chiffchafs and this Fan tailed warbler also called a Zitting Cisticola.


On the beach there are a small mix of birds, there are Sanderlings and Turnstones, along the strand line, Lesser Black backed and Yellow legged gulls a bit further back in and then some Egrets, both the Cattle ones with yellow bills and the Little Egret.

Plenty of Sparrows about, House Sparrows, not Spanish though I did see some Spanish Sparrows a few days ago at a lagoon about 20 Kilometers inland.

Otter hunt; Lydbrook

18th October 2018… guess what… no Otters however a couple that I was talking to said they saw one yesterday.. This looks like a suitable Otter spot???

Anyway as you can see it was a lovely afternoon with the sun picking out the developing Autumn colours.

There was a Kingfisher up and down but preferred to perch well away from the bank.


The water was still flowing fast with quite a few apples floating down stream. In the river there was one brave little Moorhen.


Up and down the bank were three Robins chasing one another round and round, I don’t know if it was formation flying for fun or territorial disputes but the three of them kept it up for almost an hour with only brief stops for a rest. (The little dots visible to the left of the photo are not dirt on my lens they are midges)


And the good news was … today there were no fishermen in the water.

Otter hunt; Ross on Wye

Yesterday (17/10/2018) I took my Otter hunting to Ross on Wye…. some one had recently put a photo of Otters taken at Ross near the White Lion pub on Face book so I thought I would give it a try.


I will not build up the suspense…. I did not see any.  The river was still quite full from recent rains but had been considerably higher, possibly 6 to 8 feet higher. This lead to a lot of mud and debris which made conditions along the bank quite treacherous.

I saw lots of Mergansers, these are saw bill ducks, there were about 12 of them.


Also there was a large party of tits mainly Long Tailed which are my favourite but also some Blue Tits and Great Tits mixed in.

It was an eventful day culminating with me dragging an 85 year old fisherman out of the river…. but only just! So no Otters but a day I will remember.

Soudley Ponds; Forest of Dean

Soudley ponds are small and user friendly.

There is a resident White Muscovy Duck  quite ugly but probably quite tasty if cooked slowly. Also a large group of Mallards or Mallard/Farm yard style ducks. These ducks are blessed by being fed with bird seed, corn and a few bits of sunflower and peanuts ( ie cheap bird seed) but a good staple for the ducks.

Then there is a good population of moorhens.

Are these two brothers? Maybe sisters, they do seem deep in conversation.

A few Little Grebes, one of my favourite water birds.

Grey Wagtails were flitting in and out.

The icing on the cake was a Kingfisher.

Ham Wall

Had an away day yesterday (5th Sept 2018) and went to Ham Wall R.S.P.B reserve.  Some nice birds on view, I just walked round with one camera with telephoto attached so shots of the scenery and the starlings in the evening were a bit restricted. However I did manage a few nice shots.

First of all the scenic shots including one that looks very Constable to me.

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There was a Great White Egret, in fact there were several but this one was a poser and I took lots of shots as did every one else…here are a few of them

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And of course there was other stuff…. I did see a Bittern, well only just. It flapped up out of a reed bed and I just caught about 3 wing beats before it disappeared but it was enough for a tick… There were Marsh Harriers about and I think I saw a Peregrine, I heard Water Rail but did not see them and the Little Grebes were very obliging.

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Finally there were the Starlings… murmurating but not in the numbers that you get in the late Autumn and Winter.


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