Tuesday, 4 May 2010

The Wheatear and the Lapwing Chicks

Yesterday, we set of for the coastline to see if we might find a Ring Ouzel but it was so cold that I suggested going up to Danby Beacon to see what moorland birds we might find.

We got there (Danby Beacon) and it was dark and raining for a short while but soon brightened. I ventured out the car for two minutes but it was bitter. We set of slowly downhill in the car and sent up two waders, not sure what. I pulled into a pull in and we looked out over the moor, there was a few Red Grouse around (of course) then Pat spotted a distant female Wheatear, then a pair and after an exasperating 10 minutes (with me) I spotted them!

We drove further down hill and the road actually had a small pull in for one car at the bottom of a slope where we had excellent views of a pair of Wheatear. The female actually flew down the slope perched 20' in front of the car and then landed below the car bonnet where we could not see it. It then appeared just to the rear of the car giving excellent views.

When it moved further away I got in the back of the car and whilst I got these pictures it was never quite near enough again apart from when it flew the other side of the car and I was stuck in the back. Whilst I love our Nissan X Trail, why do the back windows only go half way down! It's dam difficult to rest a 500mm lens on.

Driving round the bottom of this hill there was good numbers of Wheatear. We saw a stonking male with a lovely peachy coloured chest. I parked up and walked back along the road but it had gone, the Lapwings were vocal but I thought the young were in the field over the stone wall.

As I walked back I was amazed to see three chicks running on the grass verge, one was in the road as two scooter boys (40 somethings) went past, the grey in the shots are road chippings. Why can't wildlife stay in the fields, I think they like the toxins on the verge!

Also saw a Stoat in this area and rabbits of course!


Roy said...

These are great shots Mike especially the Lapwing chick. I have still not seen a Wheater this year yet.

Linda Yarrow said...

Lovely pictures of both the Wheatear and the Lapwing chick. It sounds as if you and Pat had a great day despite the cold and the rain.

Mike Randall Bird Photography said...

Thanks Roy, the Lapwings were a bonus.
Yes, Linda without barely getting out the car.

Chris said...

Excellent Mike. The lapwing chicks pictures are wonderful and I love the northern wheatear too ;-) The latter is back over here too, and I hope I'll get nice pictures soon..

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