The short spell of unseasonably warm weather is over and I have forsaken the Kingfishers of North Marsh for a quieter, more reflective location. The Watton reserve hide is a unique location but does demand a very long lens to obtain the best images. The majority of the action takes place at least 100 metres away from the hide but that’s a challenge that I am willing to accept. The most common species available to photograph at this time of year are Mallards, Teal, Coots, & Cormorants. There are also a pair of Mute Swans with their three signets, Grey Heron and perhaps if you’re lucky, a Little Egret too.
Once or twice a day, a Red Fox will patrol the perimeter of the lake looking for an opportunity of a meal. Usually, the wild-fowl will be alerted by the presence of the Fox, before I see it. The birds will become agitated and vocal and will swim to the centre of the lagoon, safe from the patrolling Fox. My favourite images of Foxes always seem to involve their interaction with other species. Here are a few examples from the last few days…
A lone Little Egret has been present for much of the week. A few evenings ago, I spent a wonderful couple of hours photographing this spectacular member of the Heron family as it foraged for food along the margins of the lake. A little too distant to see the results of its endeavours but a wonderful spectacle, none-the-less.
The Cormorants seem to be a permanent fixture on this part of the reserve. However, it is very rare to see a bird actively fishing. I was lucky enough to capture this image of a Cormorant devouring a rather large perch.
Finally, here is photograph of a female Kestrel that was being chased by several Crows. It took refuge in a nearby Hawthorne for a few seconds before flying away to a more secluded location. I guess that we both have at least one thing in common!