The Dark Room

Tuesday 28 July 2015

Eleonora's Falcon

This super smart looking (light) Eleonora's Falcon is without doubt the best view I've ever had in Europe. I was just lucky to be in the right place at the right time for this brief view as it powered towards a small group of Swallows and Red- rumped Swallows that I was photographing in the hotel garden of Grande Eleon Spa. The falcon made a unsuccessful ambush but gave me a superb view of its rusty brown underparts and dark coverts as it went over head.

The images below are in sequence as to my favourite first.

Sunday 26 July 2015

Red-rumped Swallows in Zakynthos

I arrived back to the UK on Friday evening having spent 10 days with family and friends on our summer holiday in  Zakynthos ,Greece. Although this wasn't a birding holiday I still racked up a few species just around and in the hotel grounds. Most evenings I would just do about 1 hours birding when the temperature dropped as it was very hot during the day and most birds wasn't seen until then anyway, about half six normally.

These stunning Red-rumped Swallows were always seen at this time feeding above the many Olive trees that are around the Hotel grounds of Grand Eleon Spa. A nice Hotel by the way.

They wasn't easy to photograph as they preferred to feed over the Olive trees, so it always felt like I was poking the lens into gaps of the trees instead of say getting a panoramic view over the pools for example, which would of been much easier BUT I did enjoy the challenge and will miss seeing them everyday now back in the UK.

Sunday 12 July 2015

Great White Egret at Dagenham Chase

Apart from a few Green Sandpipers at the valley this week, birding has been quite but when Vince went and found the Great White Egret at the Dagenham Chase on Saturday (a site first) a mini twitch of local birders flocked to the Chase NR.

Good views from the wooden fence over the scape. See image below.

Used the x2 converter again for this record shot.

Sunday 5 July 2015

Wood you believe it

Well, after years waiting for Wood Sandpiper to be added to my Ingrebourne Valley patch list, I've now seen three this year. Dave Mo and Paulboy found two yesterday at the back of the viewing area in the same place as the spring bird!.

They both showed well all day and even got our highest amount of birders seen at the valley this year. Two Green  Sandpiper were still hanging around with six being there mid-week. Also Common Tern and a young Water Rail and a very smart Juv Black-headed Gull were present in the evening.

Lapwing on the left and one of the Wood Sandpipers on the right. I used the x2 converter for this record shot at f11.