Saturday, 18 September 2010

Oare what?

Sue and I made a quick midweek visit to Oare on Wednesday morning. I have only just got round to writing about it...

The tide was out, way out, so there wasn't that much to see. One thing we did see was a bunch of Spoonbills on a sandbank across the Swale, recognisable because they were a) big, b) white, c) tall, and d) someone had told us they were there. It was a scope situation though, there was really no point attempting a photo.

There were waders scattered about on the mud. The closest one was a godwit, but not a Bar-tailed as I'd expected but a Black-tailed, uncharacteristically feeding on salty mud when a thousand or so of its friends were the other side of the sea wall, behaving like normal Blackwits and walking about in the Flood.

It soon saw sense and flew back inland, obligingly going right over our heads to reveal its wingbars and an almost complete lack of secondaries.

Strong winds (as usual, really) kept avian activity at a low level. We found a Wheatear on the path, and a Yellow Wagtail or two, but I couldn't get close enough for good photos. On the flood there were a few Avocets and Ruffs with the Blackwits, and a couple of Snipe zoomed out of the marshy edges.

One of the few birds that did fly within camera range was this fine Great Black-backed Gull. Not much to say about it apart from I wouldn't want to be in the way of that bill.

The feeding waders had moved closer to the road when we went past again. This Ruff was playing hide-and-seek with me, and my camera (or rather the teleconverter) was playing silly buggers again. I was lucky to get any pics at all...

The teleconverter has gone back to Warehouse Express for replacement now. Hopefully I'll get another one soon... meanwhile I'll have to cope with a mere 300mm!

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