Tuesday, January 05, 2010

too shy, shy

Since finding this Cetti's Warbler on the settling lagoon at Willington in mid December (when it 'showed' for only one afternoon) it has been missing for over three weeks despite regular coverage, only to turn up this morning in the permafrost conditions. Easily picked up courtesy of its 'fart like' call, seeing it was another matter as it proved adept at hiding in only two foot tall vegetation. The above image was the end result of me standing still for over 30 minutes whilst it crept around hidden like a mouse at my feet - many more female Cetti's must get missed.

Whilst on the subject of skulkers, last night I was fortunate to have brilliant views of four different Bitterns at Brogborough Lake, two birds were simply standing on the ice in front of small patches of reed on the lake fringe. Earlier a Peregrine had been seen striking one of the birds as it flew from one patch of reeds to another, it landed in the reeds with the Peregrine circling but refusing to enter the reeds, then suddenly a fox appeared and began working the reeds, at this point the Bittern flew again and vanished into another patch of reeds. As darkness fell one of the Bitterns flew and landed to roost in a tall willow, some ten minutes later the fox was again patrolling the frozen reed margins before walking some 300 metres onto the middle of the largely frozen lake. I find the behaviour of nature in harsh conditions amazing.

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