Wednesday, 26 June 2013


I tried to photograph the local birds on Eastfield Park, but sadly the council seemed it fit to place a massive fair on the park. It normally sits on Lings park/Lings woods but they're building a new temple on it so...."put it on Eastfield". I'm not bothered about the fair, good people, as a kid Ben the Plumber, myself and others as kids used to help Mr.Evans (fair ground owner) for cash in the hand, but a combination of camera and loads of drunk teens it was sensible not to have the camera with me..tempting fate etc. I was justified to worry as there has been four stabbings already!!! My main reason was the Starlings down there, a couple of times as I finished work there's been a size able flock feeding in the grass playing field of the schools opposite the college, they can't feed in the college grounds as their fields have been replaced with a massive concrete carpark so the students can park their cars...thought students were skint!!!! Plenty seem to have nice shiny cars....back to the point, the starlings (three flocks) are under a constant attack from the sparrowhawk that I've blogged about, doing fine with three juveniles by the way.The flock has developed a technique when under attack from the sprawk by flying into the reedbed for cover, this gave me a chance of getting a proper record shot, to enable a count of starlings. the dodgy image below
Uncropped no processing etc, just to give me idea of how many birds there are, I counted 105 (easily an under-count) starlings in the frame, mostly juveniles, there is more behind this flock so about 120-130 in total, this remember is one flock of three.  These juveniles are fleeing to the reedbed, staying low whilst it seems the adults flock together into the nearest tree, it'll be interesting to see how many stay for the winter...depends how many the sprawk gets.
Yesterday evening to make up for my 3 days awol from the missus coming up (British GP) we went for a meal and pint down the Billing Mill, "How sweet Doug, and no birding, bonus points love" came the response from the other half....well not quite, we had our meal, it was sunny outside so I enquired whether we should sit outside on the beer tables, it was agreed and I grabbed my camera from the boot of the car that I snuck in whilst she was doing her "hair"... "I knew you couldn't go a day with photographing birds" came to somewhat grumpy response to that, no bonus points for me then, huh, huh....It was only a tern as well...Common Tern

Hovering nicely in the evening sun, forgive the quality, Stella does an odd thing to ones judgement!
This got a few "ah, sweet" from the missus as the tern popped onto the post, a spot of preening.
 The next two are my favourites, there has to be an easier way to preen?

 A more standard style portrait?
 This made me laugh as my missus reckons it reminds her of one those ghosts with their head under their arms...yeah I could see what she meant...
Best quote again came from the missus, "they're noisy buggers aren't they, and they remind of Kestrels",.... can't wait for the Grand Prix!


  1. Excellent set of images Douglas, especially the two of the hovering!
    A romantic meal out with an ulterior motive...I like your style!..or should that be bravery?

    Do you reckon those Starlings will stay for a winter roost? It would be good if they did.

    Have a great weekend at Silverstone, enjoy the race...and the mud! (it's always muddy at Silverstone!!)

    Prediction:- Vettel (Red Bull have got Silverstone sorted!!) Alonso and Rosberg and for an outside bet..a Force India!...[;o)

    1. Cheers Trevor,it's a thin line between bravery/stupidity at least the sofa is comfy:)
      The starlings have increased on the estate year on year but are often joined by extras in the winter so it's possible we'll have a winter roost, we have one already but it's small in numbers however this is the most starlings I've seen here so far, so promising.
      I don't get muddy at Silverstone, the park and ride from the footie ground takes you right up to the door and you get your own section of dual carriageway so no being stuck in traffic, depends what tyres they bring, Alonso in my opinion is quicker the Vettel around Silverstone so IS Webber, so I'm going Alonso, Webber and either Massa (he is quick too around Silverstone) or Vettel

  2. Common tern yoga, now that is a new one!! Great images :)

    1. Thanks, though I would be worried if it started doing pilates:)