Tuesday, 27 January 2015

You wait all day for a bus....

You know that old saying, 'You wait all day for a bus, then two come along at once'? I've found that with birding.
A few years ago we were hunting for Bitterns, well not actually hunting, but you know on the look out. And after we finally saw our first one, after nearly a year of looking and hoping, we saw loads!
Its been like that with our Water Rail!
On Sunday, 25th we went back to Rainham Marshes and we saw ourselves another 2! One after staking out some reeds for about 5 minutes and he dashed out in to the open and back in to the reeds like a shot and another who was feeding pretty opening underneath a tree near the board walk.

Water Rail

More shots form the day |

Dunnock/Hedge Sparrow





Brown Rat

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Weekend in Thetford

Over the 10th & 11th of January we had a weekend away bird watching up in Thetford.

First up on Saturday morning we visited High Lodge, for just a walk and a look about for any woodland birds. All we saw were Crows and Magpies. That was all! We heard plenty, just actually seeing them was another matter!

Saturday afternoon we visited the infamous Lynford Arboretum on the look out for a Hawfinch. We set out on our walk with a quiet confidence as Lynford Arboretum is known for its Hawfinches, but alas even after two visits (Saturday and Sunday) we were unable to find one.
We did see a nice group of Siskins feeding and a nice range of woodland birds flocking around feeders and scattered seeds.

On Sunday, after our revisit to Lynford Arboretum, we headed to Lakenheath Fen RSPB reserve. When we arrived we were told that there were 2 Great Egret's, a Bittern and some Bearded Tits that had been spotted that morning. Sometimes I'm sure the RSPB staff tell porkie pies! So many times we have visited a reserve to have been told that [insert bird] is rocking about, but we haven't seen even a glance of it. Same goes for this day!
Here we managed to see a lot of Gulls, a Whopper Swan (too far to photograph), a fleeting glance of another Water Rail, a Marsh Harrier and a rather unhappy looking Mute Swan. As we were leaving we did get a quick view of a Barn Owl, but I only really saw it as a white blur.

Blue Tit

Marsh Tit


Female Chaffinch

Male Chaffinch 

Great Tit

Mute Swan, victim of a possible gang fight? 

Friday, 23 January 2015

I tell ya, we're gonna see a Water Rail!

For the last few years, my partner and I have had a different bird that we have wanted to see each year. Its a, 'I want to see [insert bird] this year!' and for 2015, it was the Water Rail. We spent plenty of time last year hoping to see it, hearing 'Water Rails here!' several times and never being lucky enough to see one. So this year I said to him 'This year we're gonna see a Water Rail!'

So on the 7th of January, our first birding trip out of the new year, we grabbed our gear and ambled over to Essex to our favourite RSPB reserve, Rainham Marshes. Its a great place to bird, I saw many of my firsts here. And bonus it has a loo! We set out for our walk around with no real high hopes of seeing anything, it was freezing cold and windy. We headed round to this little section where they have bird feeders to have a see what was about, expecting to see the usual. Which we did, including two rats having a munch.
We weren't standing there long, when I started smacking my partner (his names Mike by the way) and pointing in to the flattened reeds.
'What?! Its a Moorhen you dope' he says, but oh no, no. I know I get confused at times, and quite often call Moorhens, Coots, and Coots, Moorhens (I can tell them apart, my mouth just moves to fast for my brain!) but this was not Moorhen. A few seconds pass and then Mike realises that what we are looking at is in fact our Water Rail! We both stand in awe for a few moments with silly grins on our faces! We have finally seen our elusive Water Rail and it hadn't even noticed we were there!

I only managed to get a shot of its behind! 

So looks like our 2015 bird is ticked off already! What now!?!

More shots from the day.


Female Reed Bunting

Great Tit

Brown Rat

Male Reed Bunting

Blue Tit

Male Stonechat 

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Welcome to Jeni Wren

First off, hello and welcome to my blog!

This is going to be exclusively dedicated to my birding adventures and all things birdy.
I have always loved birds, my dad used to go through a garden birds book with me showing me the difference between a robin, a chaffinch and a house sparrow. Four years ago when I met my partner, he took me out birding and I just fell in love. I get so excited when I see a new bird for the first time or an old favourite.
I enjoy the thrill of the spot then the excitement of trying to catch a photograph, 90% of the time its a fail, I may get a blurry image where I wasn't quick enough and the bird was far too quick, or I may have amazing luck where I actually get a good shot!
I have so many images now, good and bad that I wanted to have a place, other than just in a folder on my laptop, of where to share them. So I'm starting this blog to showcase my adventures, my near captures and my get-lucky-shots. Also some of my older images that have had no love, in a sort of a flash-back-friday sort of post!

Hope you stick around to see more!