I was a very chilly morning here last Wednesday and I was well wrapped up against the cold but it was sunny with a wonderful quality to the chill Arctic air. Perry Lane was full of visiting Redwing and a few Fieldfares plus, Robin, Dunnock, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Cetti's, and Blue, Great and Long Tailed Tits. Would I see any Beardies as my long-term project is trying to capture them in different weather conditions and frost is one I've not had any evidence of? I saw a couple of flocks of Reed Buntings busily feeding as I made my way down to the pontoon bridge but there were none around there and the surface of the lagoon was frozen. I saw a male Stonechat in the adjoining reed bed. Anyway to cut a long story short by the short pontoonI struck gold with distant views of Beardies feeding on the reeds. As I waited they gradually moved closer and I had them in front of me, to the side and behind me - completely surrounded! Anyway without more ado some photos!
A fabulous female!
A male with frosted breakfast!
Another beautiful female!
I've waited a long time for a nice well-lit, male Beardie, happy with this!
A lovely pair - unfortunately even with good light the depth of field wasn't sufficient to keep both sharp.
Some on the bridge surface too!
Through the reeds. Close up.
Another close up!
I have loads of photos but you can probably have too much of a good thing!
Fantastic photos and video, John--thanks so much for posting! And you would need to post far more photos for me to say it was (they were?!) too much of a good thing!
In reply to Gardenbirder:
Great to see the Beardies John, they have such a distinctive sound so easy to pick out as they head to the reeds and grit trays. There seems a good number of them on your video clip, such a remarkable looking species but wish they would change the name to Moustached Reedlings lol How fantastic to also see them on the springy rubber tread bridge !
"Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again"
In reply to HAZY:
Wonderful John and you certainly can't have too much of a good thing.
In reply to nairnred:
Stunning John, well worth the wait to get such distinct photos. Love the video too, thanks for posting.
Lot to learn
In reply to gaynorsl:
A beautiful set John, thanks for sharing.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
In reply to Catlady:
Thank you Ann, Hazel, Jenny, Gaynor and CatL. I really never tire of them. My next challenge is to film them in the snow. I saw one a couple of years ago, strangely a juvenile, which flew up and down behind the screens on both sides of the main path. Unfortunately I only got photos of that one and because of the overcast winter sky results weren't so sharp.
In reply to john_l_uk:
Superb John !! but the first thing that came to mind was - you jammy *** :) but thats just sheer jealousy, these really are awesome shots & captures
In reply to Nickynackynoo:
Great stuff John, glad to see that you can still find them.
My Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bobs_retired_now/
In reply to Bobs_Still_Retired:
Cheers Nicky and Bob. Last year wasn't a terrific year from the point of view of seeing Beardies but more than made up for by the last couple of weeks. i just hope that 2017 gets off to a flying start. I'd like to get at least one photo every month - didn't see any this morning but have seen them distantly earlier this year so hopefully I'll achieve this ambition.
Best of luck to you John, did you see Simon Bedford's photo on Gwent Birders after stalking them here the other day? he managed a lovely post sunrise shot so you seem spot on about the early start for them
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