My blog is mostly about wildlife, particularly birds, walking, days out, all growing things and anything else that comes to mind.
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Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Travelling south for a particular bird.......

Over the next three to four weeks, I'm going to be more curtailed and have a more rigorous timetable to adhere to - but more of that another day. So today I decided I wanted to use the full day to travel further afield than "just local". I'd been wanting to see the Common Terns at the WWT Arundel so off I headed. Needless to say, I was hoping to get some decent pictures as well. :D

As I left the visitors centre on arrival, a family of Pheasants greeted me.

As I walked on a bee was gathering nectar from a plant..

Around another corner, and this female Chaffinch

was kept company by a male..

both were observed by a Great Tit

The sun was getting very warm as this Mallard family had a doze

After a sandwich, a cuppa coffee and a rather tasty piece of coffee cake... (well, I'm sure I walked the calories off in the afternoon heat) I came across this Shelduck have a wash and brush up

then deciding enough was enough so balanced on one leg for a bit of a change..

A Banded Demoiselle sat in the heat..

whilst another family of Mallards - very young ones this time - could not keep their eyes open..

Whilst back by the visitor centre and watching some other birds, this female Tufted Duck and her brood approached below me..

and the little ones came "ashore"

But the bird that I'd come to see was very much in evidence. The Tern raft was immediately in front of the visitor centre but only visible through double glazed glass windows!!

I gather there are 3 young ones but I only saw two in the time I was watching.

Moving away from the visitor centre, I walked along the path and found the terns fishing!!

Back "at the ranch" one of the little ones was coming out to play, whilst its sibling stayed under cover in the "tunnel"

A little while later and much further out in the pond, one of the adult terns chose to land on a post next to a Black-headed Gull

They both registered their displeasure at seeing the other one in "their" space, but finally settled down in mutual tolerance!

I'd also enjoyed one of the boat rides around the reed beds in one of the electric boats. Voles were visible but mostly well hidden amongst the very noisy reeds - it was rather windy!

Dragonflies flitted about tantalisingly near but the boat's movement wasn't conducive for pictures of them!

As we disembarked, high above on top of the tree line at the top of the hill, two Common Buzzards performed their aerial acrobatic display.

OK time to move on and as there was a bit of time to spare I popped in to the Warnham Nature Reserve. Walking through to the first hide, I saw a Tree Creeper. Other than that it was very quiet. There are two tern rafts and both have a pair of terns - but no young in evidence.

They are very far out (as I've mentioned in a previous post) but I managed a shot of one on its usual perch!

A good day out in the sunshine!


Warren Baker said...

Hi Trish,
I would hate to be curtailed!
I love those tern pics! Well done.

Anonymous said...

That was a good day Tricia, lots of nice photos. Great shots of the Tern.
Coffee Cake indeed.!!!

Tricia said...

Hi Warren and thanks. My curtailment's all in a good cause :D

Roy - thanks and yes - quite a good day on the whole. Coffee cake was scrummy :D :D

Tom said...

What a great place to visit... and great pictures to share..

Remember.... One good 'tern' deserves another ;O)

Phil and Mandy said...

some lovely photos there Trish, we have been to Arundel a few times and also Pulborough when in that area.Phil

ShySongbird said...

A lovely day out Tricia with lots of lovely photos. The Tern in flight was great. If the coffee cake had included walnuts it would have been a perfect day :)

holdingmoments said...

What a great day you had in the sun, and so much to see. And cake!

Caught the Terns really well Tricia; I had no luck at all at the weekend, far too quick for me.
Lovely shot of the Tufted chick, and the female swimming towards you, with the family.

The journey was worth it; you got your 'decent' pictures. :)

mick said...

I sure would have liked to be with you for that day out! The tern photos and their young are very special.

NatureStop said...

What a wonderful day you had. The tern shots are great.Thanks for sharing!

Tricia said...

Tom - I like the Reserve and its in a great location too. If one good tern deserves another then...

Phil - thanks. Arundel and Pulborough and well situated to visit both in a day.

Jan - thank you. Ah yes - coffee and walnut cake....yum yum.

Keith - Thank you. Sorry you didn't "catch" any at the weekend but, as you say, they are fast at times. Just wish I'd been able to catch some as they dived.

It was a treat to see the little Tufties! :)

Mick thank you. It would have been really great to be able to photograph the young ones from a closer point but at least they're records shots and it was wonderful to see them.

Hi NatureStop - thanks and it was a great day out :)

Midmarsh John said...

Wow Tricia. That looks like a great day out. Beautiful pictures of the wildlife you spotted.

swatson said...

more lovely photos and a great tale of your day out,although they are common I just loved the pics of your young pheasants,we have adults feed in our garden but no youngsters come

Billy said...

Hi Tricia, great shots of the Common Tern. Looking at the tern in the last photo, it doesn't look like a Common... more like sandwich or something rarer?

Chris said...

Hi Tricia,
This is a great day you got. Wonderful. I love the shots of terns. Ours still do not have babies and still did not start nesting!! They are on nest but no eggs!

Jayne said...

As per usual your shots are brilliant Tricia - really enjoyed lookign at them

Tricia said...

John - twas a good one indeed and thank you.

Sheila - Thanks - the young pheasants were rather cute! Perhaps one day the young will come to visit your garden.

Billy - thanks. I'm not v.good at spotting the difference with terns. The picture you refer to is heavily cropped and edited as the tern was so far away.

What leads you to think it's not a Common Tern? (I think they were recorded in the "hide" book as Common, but....)

Chris - hopefully you'll start seeing eggs very soon :)

Jayne - thank you.

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