Monday 30th October

Love the back-lighting and highlights (Bokeh) effect.

Rich autumn colours emphasised by the low morning light

Harsh stare of the Fieldfare, not happy with my presence.

Love this little fellow. He flew to greet us as we walked along the path. Have other photos which I will share but I liked this shot for its 'difference'.

The quality of light at this time of year makes up for the infrequency of good weather. Unusually warm today, but pretty quiet on the marsh. We sat and watched the Black Headed Gulls 'playing' on the water. Climbing, swooping and splashing. I'm unsure if their curious actions are playing but they seem to be enjoying it. Saw a Stonechat sitting on a fence post, he would catch passing flies before returning to the fence. Haven't seen him since spring! Will post a photo later in the week, hope to see him again if the weather holds.

Closer view of him with his dinner.

American Mink heading down stream towards the pipe bridge.

crimson wax cap (hygrocybe punicea).

snowy meadow cap (camarophyllus niveus )

Friday 27th October

Good days for weather and photography seem to be getting fewer, today was rather grey and dark, but life goes on as they say. Thanks to a friend that I have not yet met, I now have names for the mushrooms that I published earlier in the week, so I'll re publish as that is easier to do.
As will also see I had another encounter with the mink on the Fleet. Bold as brass, floated still in the water watching me and Holly. I was able to follow him along the stream and discovered that he was carrying a rat for his dinner. They can't be all bad then.

Thursday 26th October

One Shoveller and two Wigeon.

Another mushroom. Must get a reference book.

Another picture of the Short Eared Owl. He does'nt look to pleased to see me.

Started out as a nice, but windy morning. I didn't take my camera as I believed it to be too windy to hand hold. As it was, I had to hurry home when storm clouds threatened.
Saw a small flock of Fieldfares on the Rowen trees much to the annoyance of the resident Blackbirds. The Fieldfare is a winter visitor and is very similar to the Song Thrush in appearance, except for its very pale under wing and rump.

Wednesday 25th October

Noisy Blackbird.

Kestrel resting after a mobbing by crows.

Short Eared Owl on the hunt.

Set out, on what I thought was going to be a beautiful sunny morning. It never really got going.
The north side swan family were back together again. One day soon they will go their separate ways. Enjoy today's photos, I've published another shot of the owl.

Tuesday 24th October

Good place to hide!

Water skiing!

Purple Toadflax. Surprised its still flowering this late!

Definite chill in the air this morning. Hat and gloves on! Sun was trying to come through but never quitre made it.

Monday 23rd October

Shaggy Ink Cap toad stool.

Short Eared Owl, has a fierce look. One of the few species of owl that you will see during the day.

Young Herring Gulls washing in the fresh water of the marsh.

We had to leave our walk till 10:00am due to the rain, but we were not disappointed.

The flock of Teal and Wigeon were still with us along with a few pair of Shoveller Duck. No sign of the north side mute swan family, but the south side swans are looking good and are not far off from flying. Tripped over a Short Eared Owl on the bank side above the Fleet, a beautiful bird will be publishing a photo today and more during the week. Still plenty of Common Hawker Dragonfly around in the warm sunshine. Nice to see the 'Volunteers' repairing the footpaths, being supervised by the 'Trust' staff, it looked like hard work, supervising!

Sunday 22nd October

North side swan family. Perhaps their last family photo?

Today was a big day in the life of the north side swan family. Today was the first time that the young swans flew any great height or distance.

With the sunshine breaking through the storm clouds and a strong, gusty wind, blowing from the south, I watched as all four of the young swans circled the marsh. I saw the frantic, but powerful beats of their wings as they attempted lift-off. The strength of their wings as they gained height and circled majestically around the marsh and perhaps, the first signs of separation as they flew in different directions. Truly a big day for the young swans and their proud parents.

A special mention for one of the youngsters who has a deformity of the neck. I have observed this bird from its earliest days and have often expected it to become a casualty of nature, where only the strongest survive. Today it took that first flight and although looked a little awkward and perhaps, a little less confident than his brothers and sisters, he/she did not seem to be hampered by its disfigurement.

Saturday 21st October

Mistle Thrush defending his berry laden tree.


Poisonous Privit Berries.

Went out this morning in the rain, went back out this afternoon in the sunshine. I know which we prefer. Enjoy the photos.

Wednesday 18th October

loved the light.

Lovely morning, hardly a breath of wind. Beat the sun to the marsh today.

Sunday 15th October

Elder berries ripe for the picking. A bumper crop this year.

Smooth Sow-Thistle, seed head covered in dew.

Young female Reed Bunting, allowed me to get quite close.

Wild rabbit enjoying the morning light, thought he was invisible!

Dull grey day, bad for photography. Just took my binoculars today and was able to stand and watch a pair of Water Rail feeding at the reed edge, very secretive bird hardly ever venture into open water. Flock of flighty Gadwall are still with us, along with Teal and a couple of Shoveler Duck. Published a few pics from yesterday.

Friday 13th October

Gadwall, male.

Bluetit, acrobatics.

Blackbird, female.

Autumn colours in autumn light.

Beautiful October morning. Managed to get to the marsh as the sun was rising, the golden light creates a wonderous atmosphere. Glimpsed the Kingfisher again, one day I will be lucky enough to capture it on film.

Tuesday 10th October

Pink campion, a hybrid between the red and white.

I've published this picture of the mallard to show him in his winter finery.

This is Kingfisher country.

Grey, damp, infact sodden day. Still, the marsh is a wonderful place to be whatever the weather.

Spent a few minutes watching a Roe Deer hind grazing on the bankside of the railway near to the Corus office. It never flinched when a train went past, but was spooked when a crow cried out making it leap for cover of the trees. A beautiful sight.

No sign of the Kingfisher today, even after we sat quietly in the damp grass for 20 minutes. Only the rain made us leave.

Sunday 8th October

A pair of Wigeon. Winter visitors.

Noisy Black-headed Gulls. First year juveniles.

Heron gliding slowly of the water.

Similar day, weather wise, as yesterday, but a totally different atmosphere! Very quiet. A few noisy gulls over the water, but along the fleet almost silent. If it wasn't for the noise from the steel works it would be quite spooky.

Saturday 7th October

Green-veined White Butterfly (male).

Bluetit posing at the entrance to the marsh.
Migrant Hawker Dragonfly.

Bright and breezy morning. Noticed that the dragonflies are still about in numbers along with a few butterflies. Saw the Kingfisher again at he top of the Fleet. Hav'nt found its perch yet.

Friday 6th October

Carline Thistle. Different!

Juvenile Mute Swans spreading their wings.

Goldfinches among the hawthorn berries.

Windy day. Flock of very nervous Pochard still around. Young swans are all flying around the marsh. Makes it impossible to tell which family they are from. Noticed that the council have cleaned up the mess from the recycling plant, but they hav'nt repaired the hole in the fence, so no doubt it will all return!

Thursday 5th October

Mute Swan

Kingfisher flyby!

Yesterday was a big day for me. Actually saw the Kingfisher.The colours were striking in the overcast light, so was the speed he was flying at. Made my day though!

Tuesday 3rd October

Gadwall, male and female. Part of a flock that have been on the marsh for a few days now.

Single male mute swan, one of several that have appeared on the marsh. Liked the contrast of the swan against the vegitation.

Regular morning perch for one of the Herons. Enjoying the brief morning sun.

Overcast day, dodging the showers. Wasn't to hopeful of any good photos, but tried all the same.