On Monday I made a determined attempt to ‘bash the patch’and see if I could find some new local birds for the year. The main objectives were a couple of over due birds firstly a cormorant which I had expected to see by now and the second target a yellow hammer which I would also expected to have seen. The yellowhammer is from the bunting family and when caught in the right light is almost magical in intensity of colour. Alas after much walking neither bird was showing despite me visiting all their favourite haunts, hopefully not a sign of things to come. I did finally catch a photograph of a very common local bird which is busy preparing nests for this years offspring and very vocal all year round.
Gleaming in the spring sunshine a Rook with its distinctive bill and bare face ideal for digging for invertebrates without messing up your face.
Another spring favourite locally is the skylark seen several times recently, now they are singing and announcing their presence over prospective nesting sites. They are very difficult to catch on camera unless you want a fluttering blob in the sky. Today however I visited Blakeney Fresh marsh for some rarer birds and struck lucky with some close ups of the village favourite.
Skylark not up in the air singing
Now I didn’t strike lucky by chance I had the benefit of previous photographers to thank as they had been leaving food for the birds over a period of days which encouraged the birds to feed and stay within range of my camera. Next on the list was a visitor from the Northern Scandinavia a Lapland Bunting which due to regular feeding was not too difficult to find.
The Lapland bunting was feeding alongside a village rarity from the same family and potentially a confusing cousin, especially the female birds, a reed bunting.
Male Reed Bunting with his distinctive blackhead
Close up and personal with The Lapland Bunting before they leave our shores and head North