Thursday, 9 June 2011

Common Tern at Dukes'

No wheels again so Shanks's Pony was saddled and the Rising Sun was the destination. I've been scouring the ditch between the housing estate/ farmers field and the hillside plantation and was finally rewarded with Large Red and a couple of Blue-tailed Damselflies. With a smile on my face and a spring in my step i continued on to the ponds at the corner of the wooded area and had sightings of lots of Large Reds, many of which were in tandem and some ovipositing and a single Common Blue Damsel. Birding was disappointing initially and i passed Swallow Pond and continued on to Hadrians Pond. Nothing too exiting here with Coot, Moorhen and Mallard all supporting families and very fleeting glimpse of a Damsel but not time to I.D.
The skies had progressively filled with black threatening clouds, as per the forecast, and i was equipped for any downpours. I was wishing for the rain as the previous day i had come across a mass of tadpoles squirming in mud in an extension ditch from one of the ponds and had been rain dancing for them ever since. Sadly the two heavy showers i had while out only managed to dampen me down before i had time to put my waterproof on but hardly touched the ground. The Dukes Pond meadow was examined again but the wind had increased with the impending rain. Dancing flora meant, not surprisingly a lack of insects so i turned my attention to the pond itself. No Damsels have shown here yet but it is a slightly exposed area and the sight of 3 German Shepherds chasing about at the edge of the water after a ball some numskull kept throwing in for them had me squirming and wondering what effect it might have as the waterside vegetation where a lot of the Damsels here hang out was being obliterated. The dogs and their imbecilic owner were having a good time so that's the main thing i suppose.
A Little Grebe called from the reeds and a pair of Canadas with 5 young were being observed along with a few Tufties when one of the Common Terns from Swallow Pond drifted over and started to feed. A fantastic sight as far as i'm concerned. I love the lazy flight of this species, lolloping along, until it decides to move. Spent a cracking 20 minutes as it went through its full repertoire while fishing very successfully. The Chris Packham thigh rub was much in evidence for most of this time.
Poor light at this time, high ISO so lots of noise cleaned up on Lightroom.


  1. That last shot is a cracker John

  2. As above, very nice shots!
    I must remember the term imbecilic, as it is a much better description then the term 'pillock' that I tend to use for such types.

  3. Thank you for your comments gentlemen.
    I must admit that Lightroom must take all the credit as without "the clean up" they would not have been posted.
    I will definately improve on them given better light.
    I could think of a few better/worse words than imbeciilic Brian but i'm too much of a gentleman myself to publish them. Although i do think them at the time.