Little Grebe at Woods Mill

This is really the Easter Monday post. We spent the afternoon at Woods Mill, the headquarters of the Sussex Wildlife Trust. We started by checking out the kestrel, and while an adult was in evidence there are – as yet – no signs of the chicks. It may be a few more weeks before they appear.

There were plenty of small birds around (chiffchaffs, robins, long-tailed tits), but the best moments were down by the lake where a pair of little grebes (aka dabchicks) – in full breeding plumage – were parading up and down the water. It was a still day, and we were there towards the end of the afternoon. Near perfect conditions and light, though I would have been even happier if they had come just a little closer to the bank. Anyway, I posted one shot yesterday. Here are a few more.

Little grebe in breeding plumage

Little grebe in breeding plumage

Little grebe in breeding plumage

Little grebe in breeding plumage

Little grebe in breeding plumage

Little grebe in breeding plumage

We also checked out the hide. Lots of blue tits and great tits, plus dunnocks and even a squirrel.

Blue tit at Woods Mill

Blue tit at Woods Mill

Blue tit at Woods Mill

Blue tit on a feeder

Squirrel at Woods Mill

Squirrel in woodland

Squirrel at Woods Mill

Just two shots from today (I have plenty more, but this is getting long). The first is a trio of dunnocks in their ritual mating dance. Dunnocks are unusual in that their common breeding group comprises three birds (two males and female – she mates with both males).

Trio of dunnocks in mating dance

The last shots are a first for me. Not the fact that it’s a rat, but that it is perched on a dead carp floating at the side of the pond. Oh yes, it’s also sticking its tongue out! 😛

Rat sticking its tongue out while standing on a dead carp

Rat sticking out its tongue

 

rat eating a dead carp

Rat eating a floating dead carp

 

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D Mark II and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens.

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2 Comments

  1. Darko April 8, 2015 at 2:02 pm #

    It must have been so far away if you could not get a bigger photo than this. It means I would probably give up on photographing them with my lens 😀 Nice job!

    • Words April 11, 2015 at 2:57 pm #

      Darko, I could have cropped in a bit tighter, but the backgrounds were quite nice. I’m trying to train myself away from filling up the frame every time! But, yes, they were a touch too far away most of the time.