Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Feckenham Wylde Moor

I awoke to a slight frost on Sunday morning, though my lie in meant the car was already de-iced thanks to the morning sunshine. A text through to Ian confirmed that there was room in the hide where he was, and about an hour later I was sat with friends, peering out over the pool at Feckenham Wylde Moor (Worcestershire Wildlife Trust).

My first visit to this reserve was some years ago and I managed to get stuck in a bog in my wellies, taking about 10 mins to free one leg! Not great when you have a camera in hand. Since then I have been a few times, but lately more to watch the kingfishers from the hide by the pool.

I'd timed my arrival well as the sun was now on the various perches and the hide had warmed up a little. We didn't have to wait long for one of the stars to turn up. Initially it chose the far perch, but later visits gave better views as the kingfishers landed much closer.

Confusing us with their similar calls, several dunnocks flitted between the island and the fields, though the real distraction to the kingfishers was a wren, which mooched about in the undergrowth.

I know I have plenty of kingfisher shots already, but the occasional trip for some more usually yields results and towards the end of the session I managed a shot of one in an overhanging tree, which I'm particularly pleased with. Might get it printed out for the wall.

The onset of "numb-bum" gained from being sat on a bench for several hours eventually persuaded me to leave, with the aim of heading to Upton Warren in case the jack snipe was still around. A good move as I encountered a gorgeous kestrel perched on some wires, though problems with the camera (flat battery!) and then a party of ramblers put pay to my chances of getting any closer.

Needless to say, the snipe wasn't at the Moors, so I headed back to the pub, to sample some St Austell Tribute that had been kindly ordered in. Very nice!

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