It's been a busy working weekend. But before that, five days ago I'd seen my first pairs of Large Red Damselflies emerging from the pond. Prior to that there had only been singles. Pond life gets really exciting in the spring (am I a very sad person?) when first the frogs get it together, then the tadpoles ad nauseum are seen swimming in the pond, then the damsels emerge and now... well come on the dragons!!
I went down to Mum's yesterday and decided to call in at Warnham Nature Reserve on the way. Wanham is a small reserve and not too much to see in the way of birds. They do have Kingfishers but I'm still waiting to see one and would like NOT to hear "well, 10 minutes ago from the hide... there was one perching....just over there...about 12 feet away....you'd have got a really good picture" Sigh!
It was late afternoon and very quiet. BUT one of the two common terns that I saw was perching on this barrier and...
(believe me, it is a tern!!)
the second, kept company by a Pied Wagtail was on Tern Island!
(again, please take my word for it, tern and wagtail they definitely were!)
Today - great excitement!! We went to the local refuse tip to dispose of Mum's garden rubbish; filled the bird feeders and generally pottered about.
Then off to a local garden to visit their garden centre; Mum wanted to add to some plants she'd bought on my previous visit.
We'd already been to another garden centre, but made a detour to check out a local lake. And, as I suspected, it was privately owned. But I did have distant veiws of a Great Crested Grebe with its one chick! Great! A "what's up there" trip along a "passing places only" lane (that was a dead end) produced a swallow preening high up on a telephone cable.
Travelling up a very busy duel carriageway (A24) to our next stop, the wheelchair was rattling in the back of the car so I pulled over into a lay-by to sort this out.
Just as I got back into the car, a Kestrel was hunting over a field and was being harrassed by a Swift!
I love these impromptu birding moments!
This was one of the views to the entrance where we were off to buy plants:
We were too early for the garden shop to open, so had a walk through the gardens but principally through the "greenhouse". I was using my Canon 20D and the macro setting (for a couple of pics) which I think performed reasonably.
We bought the required plants and headed off home for a welcome cuppa before I came north to home!
Mr and Mrs Stonechat
2 hours ago