A peaks and troughs visit to the reserve yesterday.
The summer migrants have largely gone, the reed beds are quiet and the winter migrants have not arrived yet in any numbers. So a bit of variety in the images today with the best moment not particularly well recorded, such is life !
Dragonflies were abundant on the wing, I am told that they have '' favourite '' perches that they return to regularly, let me tell you that generally the Titchmarsh Dragonflies haven't read the book !, well with the exception that is of one that I believe is a Migrant Hawker.
The tell tale signs of a Sparrowhawk kill ( apologies for using a 300mm F4 lens ).
I'm not very good at identifying fungi and mushrooms, having checked my guide when I got home I think this is Tremella mesenterica.
Following the breeding season mixed tit flocks are in evidence with one flock I estimated to be close to one hundred birds taking nearly ten minutes to pass through the shrubs dominated by long tailed, Blue and Great tits.
Hopefully some rarer species ( Goldcrests and Blackcaps perhaps ) will join in as the season moves forward and leaf cover retreats improving visibility.
And now the good bit !
Walking back to the car, for the second time this year I heard a prominent call that I did not recognise ( and there are many many others that I still can't identify ), the first time was when I heard the contact calls of three newly fledged Sparrowhawks.
This call was along similar lines but much longer in duration, higher pitched and noticeably more rapid, as usual in these situations I consult the xeno-canto web site, link below..
Throughout the summer we have had three Hobby's on the reserve, could it be ?
http://www.xeno-canto.org/explore?query=Hobby ( Reference number XC153191 )
Yes it could !, over the next hour I watched the birds coming and going, at one point I saw four of them on the wing with one fledgling calling from the nest site so I suspect that the parents have three young.
The two fledgelings that I saw on the wing were flying strongly so it seems to me that they have been airborne for a few days.
Their food source of dragonflies is abundant as I said at the top of the blog so they should do well. Sadly the birds were too distant for anything other than record shots.
A fantastic end to the day !.
A heavily cropped image.