Posted by: mynaturaldiary | February 22, 2015

Nithering

Wind chill is a blunt tool; it freezes you just as surely as colder conditions. The RSPB reserve at Saltholme suffered brisk north westerlies as an Atlantic low swept down cold air from further north, freezing all.

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That includes the birds and mammals, but they seem to take it in their stride.

A Snipe showed well at the Phil Stead hide.

150222# (87)

Snipe (Gallinago gallinago)

150222# (92)

He often hid in reeds where his natural camouflage served him well.

150222# (83)

He turned to face the hide and revealed the eyes at each side of his head.

150222# (84)

This allows the bird to see a larger field of few than we can with binocular vision. They can see most of what’s behind themselves, with panoramic, almost 360° vision. It’s a useful trick if  you are being constantly threatened by predators. But what might those predators be?

Weasels

150222# (57)

Least weasel (Mustela nivalis)

and Red Foxes for two.

150222# (56)

150222# (60)

Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes)

This fox is being very lazy, eating the spilled seeds from the feeders above. On the feeders across the reserve were a range of birds, including Greenfinches and Goldfinches, the latter squabbling mid air with each other over who gets to feed.

150222# (64)

150222# (65)

150222# (66)

Greenfinch (Carduelis chloris)

150222# (76)

150222# (79)

150222# (77)

150222# (78)

150222# (80)

Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis)

Chaffinches

150222# (61)

Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)

Tree Sparrows

150222#(40)

Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus)

Reed Buntings (on the ground)

150222# (62)

Reed Bunting (Emberiza schoeniclus)

There were Blue Tits,

150222# (69)

Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus)

Great Tits

150222# (71)

Great Tit (Parus major)

and occasionally a pair of tits together.

150222# (70)

Also Starlings

150222# (48)

Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)

and Pheasants

150222# (82)

Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)

Up in the skies were Barnacle Geese.

150222# (49)

150222# (52)

150222-100

150222-101

Barnacle goose (Branta leucopsis)

And on the waters, a Tufted Duck

150222# (53)

Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)

Wigeon

150222-102

Wigeon (Anas penelope)

And finally Teal.

150222# (88)

150222# (90)

Teal (Anas crecca)

 


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