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.


Soudley ponds and the Osprey

I spent most of the day at Soudley ponds where recently there has been an Osprey, this is quite unusual for the Forest of Dean and indeed such a small pond. This is a photo of the branch on which it was evidently  perched around 8am today, ( before I arrived).soudley-ponds1

There were some Mallards and they were having a good splash about in the sun.soudley-ponds2soudley-ponds3






I spent a large part of the day sat on a bench with a chap from Ross on Wye camera club and another chap from Bristol who had taken a days holiday to come and see said bird.

We were entertained by a constant parade of dog walkers and ramblers, many of whom kindly told us about where they had seen the Osprey. This dog walker spent some time encouraging his dog to jump into the pond right in front of us and to fetch a ball.soudley-ponds7

Towards the end of the day some ‘heavyweight birders’ turned up, complete with photos of the osprey that they had taken yesterday , the day before and the day before that. You can see them on the Gloster birder web site. This is a photo of the branch were it was sat last night.soudley-ponds4

Later a Goshawk flew over and the heavyweights with their 500mm lenses got some great shots. I took these shots with my Mk 1  100/400 mm lens.soudley-ponds6soudley-ponds5