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UK Bird Pics Autumn/Winter 2020/21

  Great Spotted Woodpecker, South Wales

17 December 2020

While waiting for the Sparrowhawk to show, there were plenty of other birds coming and going on the feeders. Most were far too fast to capture, but this slightly unusual Great Spotted Woodpecker pose in the early morning light is worth showing. 


  Blue Tit, South Wales

17 December 2020

Plenty of these around but moving very quickly as ever. This one spent a few seconds on this perch - just long enough!
  Sparrowhawk, South Wales

17 December 2020

My third visit of the year to Ian Howells' great Woodland hide in South Wales! Fortunately it was just before the latest Welsh Covid-19 lockdown. 

The main aim of this visit was to photograph the male Sparrowhawk that I'd seen previously as an immature and then moulting.

For this visit the moult was complete, and he was looking very smart indeed!

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For a gallery of all my Sparrowhawk photos from this session, click here.
Sparrowhawk, South Wales

17 December 2020

A crop of the shot above

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For a gallery of all my Sparrowhawk photos from this session, click here.
Sparrowhawk, South Wales

17 December 2020

The bird was facing away for almost the whole time during its three visits. Just once it arrived and faced the other way very briefly.

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For a gallery of all my Sparrowhawk photos from this session, click here.
Sparrowhawk, South Wales

17 December 2020

Suddenly alert, the bird had spotted a movement and was about to dash off in hot pursuit!

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For a gallery of all my Sparrowhawk photos from this session, click here
Sparrowhawk, South Wales

17 December 2020

This bird came in once and surprisingly chased off the male before abruptly departing. Fortunately the male came back shortly afterwards.

Thanks to Mick Cunningham for correcting me on the age of this bird. It is not an adult female as I had thought but actually a juvenile/first winter.  Sex uncertain. 

Click to enlarge

For a gallery of all my Sparrowhawk photos from this session, click here
  Buzzard, Near Swindon, Wiltshire

10 December 2020

I had a good day at David White's Buzzard hide near Swindon (bookable through Wildlife Photography Hides) despite the poor light all day and the rain for some of it.

With some early morning sun it would however have been much better!

On the ground tucking into Pheasant!

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Buzzard, Near Swindon, Wiltshire

10 December 2020

On a nearby post

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Buzzard, Near Swindon, Wiltshire

10 December 2020

The direct stare!

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Buzzards, Near Swindon, Wiltshire

10 December 2020

When the food starts to run out, the fighting begins. This difficult to capture in the poor light however.

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Buzzards, Near Swindon, Wiltshire

10 December 2020

The one on the right was clearly the subordinate bird and was held down by the other for quite some time. It eventually flew off, apparently none the worse for its experience.

Click to enlarge
  Red Kite, Near Swindon, Wiltshire

10 December 2020

The odd Red Kite was also to be seen, usually flying over and dipping down to grab a morsel. This one decided to land quite close to the hide early on when the light was really poor.

Click to enlarge
  Kestrel, Ferrybridge, Dorset

23 October 2020

As with Lodmoor, I've previously had some success at the large Ferrybridge car park using the car as a mobile hide. I'd found this relatively tame Kestrel hunting close to the car park a few days earlier but it wasn't being very obliging. In this longer session I managed to get quite close to it when it was both hovering around the car park edges and when perched on a rock (see below).

In this shot, the bird almost appears to be in level flight - but it was just adjusting its position momentarily when hovering. Just a pity the light wasn't better.

Click to enlarge
Kestrel, Ferrybridge, Dorset

23 October 2020

Another shot of the hovering bird, but this time the background was the Portland hill which gives less of a silhouette effect and stronger colours.

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Kestrel, Ferrybridge, Dorset

23 October 2020

Hovering and looking at me instead of searching the ground for prey!

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Kestrel, Ferrybridge, Dorset

23 October 2020

Perched on one of the rocks used to mark the edge of the car park. 

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  Meadow Pipit, Ferrybridge, Dorset

23 October 2020

A less glamorous inhabitant of the car park!

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  Grey Heron, Lodmoor, Dorset

20 October 2020

Just after take-off - fortunately in a direction almost perpendicular to my line of sight to it.

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  Black-tailed Godwit, Lodmoor, Dorset

20 October 2020

Sun was in short supply for our week in Dorset, but here it appeared weakly late afternoon to brighten up a flock of godwits that was feeding quite close to the path.

Click to enlarge
  Teal, Lodmoor, Dorset

16 October 2020

As I have found before, the path along the western side of Lodmoor can be good in the late afternoon/early evening as many birds seem used to all the human traffic. This Teal is a prime example, normally so wary this one was feeding happily only a few meters from the path.

Click to enlarge
  Kestrels, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

Another great session at Pete Whieldon's Woodland Hide which provided some further evidence of the many benefits of the EOS R5.

The male and immature tended to appear alternately until this last, mid-afternoon visit when both appeared together. However this pose did not last long!

Click to enlarge.

For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
Kestrel, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

The immature coming into land - taken with the EOS 7D mkII. Action shots weren't easy this session and I only got one sequence early on.

Click to enlarge.

For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
Kestrel, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

The male in weak sun on the nearest perch.

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For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
Kestrel, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

The male on a rock with a dark background

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For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
Kestrel, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

The immature.

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For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
Kestrel, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

Close shot of the immature.

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For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
Kestrel, Otterbourne, Hampshire

13 October 2020

A crop of the photo above showing the benefit of those 45 Mp!

Click to enlarge.

For a Gallery of all my Kestrel photos from this session, click here.
  Red Kite, Berkshire Downs

9 October 2020

Another flight shot using the animal eye detection auto focus feature on my new toy - the 45 Mp Canon EOS R5 mirrorless camera.

Click to enlarge 
  Red Kite, Berkshire Downs

9 October 2020

Crop of the shot above

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  Red Kite, Berkshire Downs

7 October 2020

Trying for some flight shots using the animal eye detection auto focus feature on my new toy - the 45 Mp Canon EOS R5 mirrorless camera!

Click to enlarge

All pictures copyright Stephen Burch

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