Thursday 30 March 2023

Cirl Buntings on the Cornish coast 30th March 2023.


Enjoyed some time watching Cirl Buntings feeding at a garden feeding station and also bathing in a large puddle at the side of the road.

These birds are Schedule 1 and whilst they aren't nesting yet I will keep the location to myself to keep disturbance to a minimum.

They were feeding alongside Yellowhammers, Greenfinch, Chaffinch & Goldfinch on mixed seeds.

I was particularly pleased to get some shots of an adult male bathing in good light.

For these interested the water shots were taken with a Nikon 500 f4 lens, Auto ISO which was 250, 1/2000 sec at f4. Exposure compensation was +2/3rds of a stop.

Female Cirl Bunting

Thursday 16 March 2023

Red-rumped Swallow at Walmsley sanctuary Cornwall 16th March 2023

A day of heavy showers and low mist and drizzle brought in my first spring migrants at our reserve Walmsley sanctuary.
Not only that though as one of them was a rare Red-rumped Swallow which has probably overshot its northely migration and missed the Mediterranean region completely.
It was in the company of about 20 Sand Martins, a day late for me as I usually reckon on them being on the River Camel on the 15th March!

A photo hit Facebook earlier of a swallow and then the jungle drums started and there was talk of it being a Red-rumped so I thought I'd best make an effort and get myself down to the reserve.
Sure enough when I arrived I found the bird feeding high over the tower hide and it seemed to be flying differently to our normal swallows so I rattled off a few photos just for record shots. Luckily I caught a few of the distinctive markings which proved that it was indeed a Red-rumped.
Apologies for the quality of the photos but the weather was shocking and the bird was flying high in the mist, however I am really pleased to be able to show proof of another good bird for the reserve.