Sunday, 22 February 2015

Barney and Me

Now it's getting colder, the wind chills to the bone and it's hard to believe, with a gale bending branches angrily against grey and sodden skies, that the morning started pristine blue with a hint of warmth in the sun.  Earlier in the week I had taken a friend and her Owl obsessed 3 year old on an Owl hunt.  Barn Owls continue to be prolific and showy along favoured stretches of the Washes and we had plenty of WOW moments driving alongside hunting Owls.  I made an early start hoping to find the small flock of Cranes that have been frequenting the Manea area, I popped my SLR on the front seat and at the settling beds a Barn Owl flew past my parked car within a 5 metre range. I decided that I'd give the Welney Owls a few minutes before searching for the Cranes.  By the time I got to the visitor centre I had seen 10 Owls en-route, I stopped frequently and the birds, engrossed in hunting, flew past unperturbed.

A Peregrine hunted the open fields as I scanned for Cranes, the favoured fields were great for watching the herds of Bewick's Swans feeding up before an imminent eastward hop to the Baltic before journeying to their tundra breeding grounds. They were a bit distant for pictures but I had a go anyway, Whoopers were also evident closer to the road but I couldn't find the Cranes this visit.