As is becoming the norm of late, I've been neglecting my blog. Quite often because I've been using spare time for other things, like work. But if I don't get it down I'll forget it, so here I am.
It made a change for me to head to Farmoor in Oxfordshire. I have often heard it mentioned by other wildlife enthusiasts, especially by locals at Otmoor, so when a red-necked grebe was reported, I took the opportunity to take a look. Unusually for me, I didn't spend a great deal of time planning and researching the site, preferring to drive down and work it out for myself on site.
Foolishly I assumed that the 2 reservoirs would be labelled in terms of size, with F1 being the largest, and F2 where the grebe was favouring, the smaller. Hence I strode purposefully across the causeway to where I had confidently worked out where the grebe would be. A returning birder then pointed out, as I asked where the grebe was, that the larger pool was F2, and hence I was miles from where I needed to be. D'oh!
Hot-footing it to where the grebe was, I bumped into some more togs, who had set up on the actual concrete basin of the reservoir, so as to get low-level shots. After a short period of waiting for the bird to wake up, it approached and with a few sprints to new locations when it was underwater, I managed to get a few decent images.
I try to keep an eye on reports from Otmoor and when the hobbies arrive back, I head down to see them. Despite being fairly early on site, the car park was very busy, and I tried to head to areas with the fewest folk, though to be fair, Otmoor is a big place, so can still appear to be empty even with so many cars parked up.
As usual, I checked any sun-drenched logs or stumps for reptiles, but failed to see any, though a singing wren near the bridge made me stop and grab a few shots.
Near the hide I could see lapwings swooping over something in the conservation area, so peered over the gate for a closer look. A brown hare. It moved to an area where it was more peaceful, and I tried to get some shots. Even at this time though, the heat haze was up and most images were soft. Then the hare started to approach where I was standing, so I remained stood dead still. Closer. Grabbing shots all the time. Would I get some decent images at last?