Went for a walk locally in Aldermaston Wharf today, mainly to get in some practice with the DSLR and the big lens, having not used it much (or better, hardly at all) over the last 6+ months (mainly due to my heart surgery, where I wasn’t able to lift it for several months). Not an awful lot exciting about today, I managed to get some decent shots of a Magpie in a tree and of a Wren trying to hide in the undergrowth. Not to forget the obligatory Red Kite. I’m still fascinated how they can twist their bodies.
Earlier this evening I noticed a very low flying Red Kite outside of my window. On closer inspection it turned out it was being pursued by a few Rooks (and others birds). Luckily my camera had the big lens mounted, so I quickly grabbed it, opened my fake balcony door and managed to get a few decent shots of the show:
Following yesterday’s 1.5 hours walk I doubled my efforts today and walked for three hours until the clouds came in. Today I stayed locally and walked to Aqua Vitae Copse and Padworth college. On the way I spotted a variety of birds: a Sparrow was carrying grass in its beak, I assume for nest building. Two Blue Tits were sitting among the fresh shoots on a tree. But the highlight was a Red Kite eating its catch while in flight before resting on a tree. Finally I enjoyed Bluebells carpeting the woodland floor.
During my Easter visit to Wales Andy didn’t only take me to Llangrannog on Sunday, he also took me to a spot where lots (and I mean lots) of Red Kites come together. I’d estimate we saw about 20-30 Red Kites in about 20 minutes. I took quite a few pictures, in particular of one which seemed to have caught something only to then drop it. We’re not entirely sure, but we think it was carrying something that looked like a mouse or similar small animal in its talons. Then suddenly it was gone and the Red Kite seemed to react surprised and confused.
(click on the pictures for larger versions)
The location where we watched the Red Kites was an unclassified road off the B4337 at Penlan Farm, just north of Trefilan.
This weekend I visited two local nature reserves, on Saturday I visited Decoy Heath, on Sunday I visited Padworth Common. While I didn’t spot any rare birds there were a few common local birds around. Here are a few of the pictures I took: