The Dark Room

Wednesday 27 May 2015

More from Minsmere RSPB

I do like going to Minsmere reserve in Suffolk, it's one of my favourite RSPB sites. You can be looking at Dartford Warbler one minute then a Bittern the next and the habitat changes as quick as well, from heathland to sand dunes. I just love the place.

Sand Martin

Common Tern

House Martin

Sunday 24 May 2015

A day out in Suffolk

I spent most of Sunday out in Suffolk with Paul Hawkins and enjoyed good views of Red-necked Phalarope, Curlew Sandpiper, Bittern, Dartford Warblers but the highlight for me and probably Paul too, was these House Martins collecting mud in a small puddle in Dunwich. We started getting some shots from the car then choose to get out of the car and lay on the floor of the car park for some low level shots.

They really do just shovel in the mud in between their bills at a high speed, great to watch!

So here are a few images of them in the Suffolk sunshine.

Friday 22 May 2015

Barn Owl

This Barn Owl gave a stonking fly past on  Thursday evening for just a few seconds in pretty good light.

Wednesday 20 May 2015

Great twitch

It made a change twitching on Sunday as most of my birding lately has been local, ie Rainham Marshes and Ingrebourne Valley. So when Martin Blow offered a lift to see the Greater Yellowlegs at Tichfield Haven Hampshire, I thought why not!. It wasn't easy to see due to the fact it flew off minutes before we arrived but to cut along story short we managed good scope views from a path about 10 minutes drive from the reserve along the canal on a small flash,  feeding with Black- tailed Godwits. A really smart looking bird with bright yellow legs, extensive speckling and a tick too.

I did take some shots but they aren't that good , so here is one of my latest images from the garden and sums up what we got told when we arrived at the reserve.

It went that way mate!

Saturday 9 May 2015

RSPB Rainham Marshes

A enjoyable afternoon at Rainham Marshes with 2 Whinchat, 3 Wheatear, Cuckoo, 1 Hobby and a Male Marsh Harrier were the highlights amongst the more common fair. However trying to photograph the pair of Whinchat on the hill was not. Crawling along the grass and trying not to be seen by them is getting a little bit frustrating, so this time I've used the x2 converter. The result isn't great but better than before.

Whinchat ISO 640 1/640 f11

Meadow Pipit without the converter on ISO 320 1/640  f6.3

Wednesday 6 May 2015

From the car window

This Kestrel was busy hovering by the side of the road down Coldharbour Lane Rainham Marshes and wasn't bothered by me leaning out  from the car window to gain some shots.

Monday 4 May 2015


When I'm out birding and walking along, my camera is always set for flights shots just in case. It's just as well that I do, as yesterday at Rainham Marshes this Cuckoo came flying in like a RAF Tornado at top speed. I did panic a bit as it came closer pressing the shutter down when it wasn't in focus but I managed to get just one image from the quick blast over the 5 second period it was in the view finder, when I eventually composed myself!

ISO 400 f6.3 1/2000

Sunday 3 May 2015

Shot of the day

Rainham Marshes produced Raven (thanks Paul), 3 Hobby, 2 Whinchat, 5 Wheatear, Cuckoo, Marsh Harrier this afternoon. I took over a hundred images today but this is my favorite of a Male Wheatear.