Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Dingle's Shingle

After leaving Ness Point on Saturday i visited the RSPB's Dingle Marshes nature reserve with the main aim of seeing the large mixed flock of Snow Bunting, Twite and Shore Lark that are feeding on the shingle there (i think someone has put food down for them...not sure). Arriving in the car park i was met with 2 Redshank which were nice as they bathed in a puddle...

I then began the walk to where the large flock have been feeding, 2 birdwatchers told me it was a bit of a trek along shingle but i was to look for 2 wooden posts where the birds seemed to congregate so off i went, these 3 Whooper Swans flew past making alot of noise, was nice to see!

The walk is definitely a bit of a trek! Probably took me 25 minutes from the car park and most of it is along sandy shingle which isn't the easiest, and when you don't know quite where you're going it always seems like you're never going to reach the end! Anyways i plodded along noticing plenty of Dunlin feeding along the shoreline and the marshy pools were also full of wildfowl and waders. The 2 wooden posts finally came into view instantly i saw birds on the ground feeding, i had to drop to the ground very quickly and adopted my usual belly crawl towards the birds, this technique makes me look like a complete idiot and is rather silly but has the desired effect as the birds didn't even bother looking up. I got as close as i thought was sensible and although not quite close enough for photo's i hoped that by staying still the birds would begin to move closer to me....this Skylark was a nice suprise and then the Snow Buntings decided to start coming close!

The Twite often popped in but photographing them wasn't as easy, being so small and less confiding meant that my 300mm just couldn't get anything of quality especially as the sun had dissapeared by this point, these record shots will do for now, cute little birds though!

This was the whitest Snow Bunt i saw on the day, unfortunately the Shore Lark never ventured to the feeding area staying further away although just seeing them was nice enough.

On the drive home i couldn't resist photographing this windmill with the sun setting behind it, another great day for me and i went to bed knowing i only had 1 more day of big 5 days birding but that was to be a good'un in the New Forest!

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