Today I thought I would have a look around some of the commons at the north of the patch. Last time I had visited, there was very little flying or singing, but perhaps with spring coming on I would have better luck and pick up a Dartford Warbler, Crossbills or some other rarity. No such luck. Having walked four of the commons and with quite a few kilometres under my belt I had very little to show for it. Chaffinches, Crows, a Woodcock flushed and a few buzzards flying overhead but not even a Stonechat on the gorse. My best effort was this quickly grabbed shot of a Treecreeper as it disappeared from sight.
My next stop was Pulborough Brooks to see if I could improve on my Nightingale shots. It was just after midday when I arrived so perhaps not the best time for viewing birds. There were a few singing but mostly from within dense bushes. A couple did make brief flights but none felt like posing for a picture. I can understand why, there were a lot of people standing around waiting for them to appear. It felt a bit like a twitch and I was keen to move on. I can't complain though, everyone is entitled to see the birds, it's just that we all feel that we would like to keep them for ourselves.
Fortunately I was saved by a call from Dave Potter to tell me that he had located a Grasshopper Warbler at Waltham Brooks.
A quick walk through the RSPB site, stopping only for a picture of a circling Red Kite, and a short drive got me to the brooks in time to get some pictures of the Grasshopper Warbler.
|and in full song|
This was a singing male establishing his territory and far more colourful than previous birds I had seen. He looked wonderful in full song and people tell me how good the trill sounds but it is too high pitched for me. I see the bird open its mouth but there is no song - very sad.
As always the pictures could be better. This is the birds natural habitat but it would be nice to get it against a plain background.