Saturday, December 11, 2010

Bittern by the bug !!

I must admit that I can't wait for the weekends to come around to get out with the camera and today after bumping into each other down at Kenfig last Sunday myself and fellow bird photographer Peter Morgan from Bridgend joined forces for a day out with the cameras.
We met up at Kenfig at first light on a mission to firstly photograph the Bitterns that have been putting on a good performance in the reed channels in front of the South pool hide.
We didn't have to wait for long as the first Bittern put in an appearance after about 10 minutes.
We watched and fired off shots until the first bird had disappeared into the reeds when from our left another bird arrived and started performing equally well on the iced over water.
As the second bird stolled up the middle channel it was met with the first bird coming out of the reeds and a bit of a spat occurred with one of the birds not fancying the aggro and flying off !!
Not long after the second bird flew off and within a short time yet another bird popped out of the reedbed to give superb views,unfortunately the weather wasn't performing as well as the Bitterns and with plenty of cloud cover the light was poor to say the least.

The third bird disappeared and the action quietenned down considerably and so we decided to push on and head for Monknash to see if we could relocate and photograph the Glossy Ibis.

We dropped off Peter's car in Bridgend and called in on the way to Ogmore By Sea only to find a high tide and not an awful lot of interest,we called in to a couple of locations hoping for Little Owl but were out of luck.

Next stop was Dunraven where we hoped we may come across a Black Redstart but the only bird of note was an obliging Kestrel perched on a fence post at the side of the road down to the car park.

We pushed on to Monknash and bumped into Paul Denning who confirmed he hadn't come across the Ibis,we soon found the stream it had been feeding in and walked the length of three fields but to no avail.

We came across a Green Sandpiper,Water Rail,a fly over Little Egret and a couple of Grey Wagtails plus a selection of the more common birds.

We bumped into another birder who had walked the entire length of the stream as far as the beach and he confirmed that the Ibis was no longer around.

We moved on to have a look for possible Black Redstart and Snow Bunting at Nash Point but a pleasant walk over past the lighthouse and back failed to locate either species.

With the light starting to fade we made a fruitless visit to the rocks adjacent the car park at Ogmore in the hope of Purple Sandpiper but both they and the usual Turnstones had by the look of it popped over to feed on Tusker Rocks.

A final call in to Portobello Island gave good views of plenty of Teal,lots of gulls,a Goosander and a nice group of twenty or so Goldeneye on the river.

With the light fading we called it a day and after dropping Peter off at his home in Bridgend I "headed for the hills",we had both enjoyed a good day out,it could have turned out better if the Ibis had still been around as well as our other target birds,with the benefit of hindsight we may have been better off going for the now large number of Waxwings in and around Cardiff,but that's birding for you !!


Wayne said...

Some belters there Randy!

Like the one of the two Bitterns having a ding-dong. Almost looks like its one looking in a mirror.

Dan said...

Piece of p*ss this bird photography lark ;-)

pedro said...

My first visit to this blog! Nice set of pics Jeff and good day out birding.

Jeff said...

Cheers Peter,it was a grand day out,thoroughly enjoyed.