Tag Archives: dunnock

Mirror Mirror

It’s been a good day today, and I have lots of images that I could show but I will probably hold some back for the weekend. The pride of place – and major part of the blog – goes to one of the many herring gulls that nest on the roofs of the University of Brighton campus at Falmer.

A number of the buildings have reflective film along the windows to keep out glare and deflect heat. These act as mirrors as this fine gull discovered today.

Herring gull and mirror window

The gull was fascinated by its reflection

 

Herring gull and mirror window

Between pecking it would pause and try to out-stare its adversary

 

Herring gull and mirror window

… or just glower.

 

I left the gull to it after watching for 10 minutes or so. I presume it eventually gave up. The rest of today’s photos were picked up on my travels during the day, but the first does have an echo of a reflection in it.

duck

Duck sleeping on Falmer Pond

rat

Cute little rat up on its hind legs to get a better view.

dunnock

A pair of dunnocks on picturesque tree

fulmar

Fulmar at Rottingdean

And last, but not least… a badger.

badger

Badger trampling the plants!

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D Mark II and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens,except the badger which was photographed with the EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM lens.

Posted in Badger, Birds, rats, water birds Also tagged , , , , |

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.

Posted in Birds, rats, water birds Also tagged , , , |

Portraits of a Dunnock

I was really pleased with these two photos of dunnock, taken today at the edge of Falmer Pond. Dunnocks are very plain birds, so getting a slightly dreamlike portrait wasn’t what I would normally set out to do. This one was being ultra bold and was perched just above the water. I took a number of shots through the branches, but all of them were marred by branches across the face and wings. The only clear angle I could get was by getting down low and partially shooting through the foliage. At least though, its face was clear, and that was the main thing I wanted.

dunnock

dunnock

Two other shots from today to go with that pair, both scoring on the cuteness scale. First is a muddy chiffchaff. It was hanging around near where I photographed the dunnock, perching briefly before flying down to the muddy bank of the pond.

chiffchaff

Last, a baby rabbit. There were several of them hopping about at the edge of the churchyard, but as with the dunnock getting a clean shot was not easy. In fact I didn’t, and this one has been cleaned up a little in photoshop.

baby rabbit

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

Posted in Birds, rabbit Also tagged , |