Sunday 27 March 2011

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker

Stuck in Manchester most of the week on business, I was monitoring friends' movements from their blogs with envy, with Max's shots of the lesser spotted woodpecker really rubbing my nose in it.

Hence, as soon as I was back and able to, I shot over to the same spot and sat in wait of it... Would it come out as it had been doing? It seemed rather strange, as commented by another hopeful tog in the hide, that waiting for a woodpecker to appear in a reedbed was very unusual!

After a couple of hours, of watching a pair of wrens potter around, and three gadwells chasing each other on the pool, I was left alone to continue my vigil. It took another 90 minutes before I heard a strange sound from the edge of the reeds and there it was, pecking furiously at the stem of a bullrush.

Tiny! What a tiny little woodpecker. Ok, I've seen them before, but against a tree it's difficult gauge size, but here on this thin stem, it showed how very small they are.
A male, with a vibrant red crown.
Just a shame the light was so poor, but I wasn't complaining after the wait - I was just chuffed to see it.

When a reed bunting landed behind it, you could see the minimal size difference, with the lesser spotted woody being only marginally larger.

I waited for another hour after it had flown away, but the light got worse and despite the recent warm weather, the return to winter-temperatures encouraged me back home again.

1 comment:

Max Silverman said...

Well done Pete.Great shots of a cracking bird.