Above is one of the gorgeous views that i experienced on Sunday as i spent the day in Hampshire, this particular picture was taken as the warm evening light streamed through the trees in the New Forest, truly spectacular! The day was a classic birding day full of great birds, photographic opportunities and excellent company in the form of Ed Taylor, Daniel Trim, Matt Newman and Sam White.
We began the day near Keyhaven at Hurst Beach and the surrounding area. This is a quality area with a harbour full of waders and wildfowl, a stream running into a large water body, a beach and a field full of cut crop, the range of birds here was amazing for such a small area and what's more it's not only full of birdwatchers and photographers but joggers, dog walkers and walkers...which all help to create an area where the birds are fairly tame and used to people.
A rusty red wire running along the crop field proved an excellent place for birds such as Rock Pipit and Reed Bunting to perch on...
The small stream from the harbour to the lake was frequented by a couple of extremely tame Little Egrets, a bird usually quite difficult to get close to yet these birds were more concerned with fishing than me and thus allowed some excellent views and my best ever photo's of the species.
Meadow Pipits were feeding in the crop....
...as well as Lapland Buntings, my first ever!
The Turnstones were even probing amongst the corn!
After a few hours here we re-fuelled on junk food and made our way to photograph Woodland birds. For me it wasn't the most productive time spent with these birds, it was good fun but the new forest ponies and a certain piece of teasel kept getting in the way and in the end i never settled and couldn't manage any decent shots! I did however get my best ever Greater Spotted Woodpecker shot which i'm happy with!
The day ended in good fashion with the Blackwater Arboretum Hawfinch roost which always delivers, and what day wouldn't be complete without a Robin...
Here's the team complete with their lenses....go team!!!