Monday, 16 August 2010

Ain't wildlife brilliant!

Another flying visit to Newcastle to take the kids home produced some more superb sightings. Before we'd even got on the ferry the family had been watching an Otter fishing and we also picked up a few Porpoise a bit further out. The best sighting we had was from the ferry itself as a Porpoise with a youngster surfaced right next to us. They rolled over as they surfaced and gave everyone a good look before continuing on their way - just fantastic!! Not a great deal of sightings on the way down except the usual Magpies...
...Buzzards and Pheasants but I made the most of my trip to fill the motor up for the return journey. A nice Coot...
...a Great Crested Grebe on the nest...
...and a couple of Common Tern.
I paid a quick visit to the coast to catch up with Sandwich Tern. It was a shame the tide was right in as the birds were just flying by so no chance of any photos. I checked out a couple of roadside pools and picked up a Stock Dove in flight while looking at a Black-tailed Godwit at the first pool and a stunning Green Sandpiper at the next pool. I was just preparing to take a shot of the Green Sand when a bunch of horses came galloping over to see what I was up to and flushed the bird! The drive back in the dark gave me a great sighting of a Badger as it crossed the road in front of me. As promised I returned to the Osprey site and attempted to get a few shots. It was still dark when I woke up and one bird was on the nest. As the sky brightened there were still Pipistrelle Bats flying about and the Grey Herons were very vocal. I didn't have to wait too long to see the Osprey wake up and take flight and then settle in a tree.
After a quick preen it made a short flight over the water, hovered briefly, then flopped into the water and just sat there for about thirty seconds before lifting off with a small fish. I was surprised at little notice the local gulls took of the Osprey and also how small they look. A bigger Osprey put in an appearance catching a decent sized fish before heading off into the distance and then another Osprey appeared and gave me an opportunity to get better shots. It was still fairly early and not that light but you have to try!
On the ferry journey back to Mull there was no sign of any Porpoise this time but there were a few Manx Shearwater crossing in front of the boat. Not the best shot but it does show how stiff winged these birds are.

No comments: