Personal musings, wanderings and sightings from around the lake.
A little history, and about the lake, at the bottom of the page.


Sometimes the picture doesn't have to be perfect; it's the captured moment that counts. - me

Sunday, 29 May 2011


I've had better days.

A bit of a cock up with the pictures today. I could have had some interesting shots, but somehow the settings got changed to monochrome through the morning, so that was that.
A week off work soon; think I need it.

Anyway, yesterday I spent a lot of time taking pictures of the Swifts and Martins that were flying over the lake. Here's one of the 'saved' results.

 A couple of Sand Martins.

So, today. Despite the camera miss-hap, the morning consisted mainly of Swans and flowers.
A few Orchids around, and this rather special one.

 A Bee Orchid

I'm going to have to go back, and get some more with the other camera.

A couple of Mute Swans were having a vicious fight on the north lake, which ended up in the reeds at the shore.

I'm afraid I broke the golden rule of wildlife photography...........I had to intervene, and break up the fight. If you watch the video, and hear the screams of one of the swans, I think you'll understand why I did what I did.

They both went off on their separate ways.

Plenty of calmer moments though, with cygnets and goslings around; and the pair of Oystercatchers were quite vocal this morning too.
Good to see the Common Gull still around, and the brief spells of sun brought out a few damselflies.

Shame about the strong wind though.


Full list of today's sightings

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Greater Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Common Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Common Gull (Larus canus canus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Sand Martin [sp] (Riparia riparia)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
British Dunnock (Prunella modularis occidentalis)
British Robin (Erithacus rubecula melophilus)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
British Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos clarkei)
British Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus obscurus)
British Great Tit (Parus major newtoni)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Eurasian Jackdaw [sp] (Corvus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
British Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs gengleri)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Total species  33


  1. Fine shot of the sand martins - I've tried to photograph them on a lot of occasions without getting anything nearly as good.

  2. Great video Keith! Amazing still photo of the Swans, my goodness, that was vicious, I'm glad you intervened, I would have had to but what exactly did you do to stop it?

    That wildflower area really is something special, the powers that be must have got something right :)

    Your mistake with the camera setting was similar to my photos mistakenly taken on 'tungsten light', they all came out a horrible shade of turquoise ;)

  3. I dont think you broke any rules under the circumstances Keith. A wild animal/bird killing something in the food chain is one thing, what that male mute was up to was just shear brutality and you needed to rescue the other one. I would have done the same.

  4. Thanks Phil. The beauty of digital.......take loads lol
    I spent at least an hour taking pictures of the Martins, Swifts and Swallows over the lake. Great fun.

    Thanks Jan. I was pretty helpless watching the swans, until they made their way to the reeds, to continue fighting. I waded in to the edge, and rattled the stems, until they stopped, and parted company.
    I was really disappointed with the camera mistake. :-(

  5. Thanks Roy. I've no idea how long they'd been fighting out on the lake; I heard the commotion as I came round the corner. Some time I think, and that poor bird was glad to get away. I've never seen such a brutal fight.

  6. Well done with the Sand Martins Keith, and a great video.
    Nature can be cruel sometimes but I think we would all have done the same thing as you with those Swans. ;)

  7. Thanks Trevor. Took a lot of pictures to get a few of those Sand Martins lol

  8. Great shot of the Sand Martins and lovely to see the native orchid.
    As for having the wrong setting on the camera - I bet we have all done that. Sometimes I think the controls have a shuffle round in the middle of the night just to make sure we are paying attention ;)

  9. Thanks John. I was really annoyed about the camera settings; I'd taken lots of pictures of flowers.......somehow they don't look so good in B&W lol

  10. SO glad you broke up that fight it sounded Gosh Awful--I would have done the same. What a lovely Orchid, all the flowers in your vid were beautiful! Great timing on those martin shots!! Sorry about the camera settings, Stuff happens right? Hope you had a great weekend!

  11. Thanks Sondra. Yea, it was a pretty brutal fight. I've never seen anything so ferocious before.