4 Dec 2009

A Nice afternoon out at Killard Nature Reserve

Yesterday I got home from work and it was beautiful outside,there was really strong sunlight so I grabbed the dog and camera and headed out to Killard. The tide was high so some of the shorebirds were on the tideline feeding on the insects in the seaweed. The Redshanks always flying off before you can get close usually in a state of high dudgeon. The Bar-tailed Godwits also flying way before I could get close calling in their distinctive way rather like a high pitched mocking laugh.

The Turnstones on the other hand are always fairly approachable and the numbers are slowly building up.

As I was walking along the shoreline I noticed a Greenshank flying towards me so I lay down and it landed fairly close. The moment the shutter clicked it was off.

I made my way to see if I could find the Grey Plover that seems to like a small outcrop and where I have seen it now over a period of five years returning every August. It is fairly shy and I saw it through my binoculars in the distance and I tried to creep and then finally crawl towards it. As I got closerI was amazed to see that there were five of them. The most I have seen there at one time.

This has to be one of my favourite birds and one of the reasons I love going out to Killard.

I also like the winter sun as it is generally fairly low in the sky and can give really good photographic opportunities. Between Killard and Strangford there is a small bay which can be brilliant for waders and today was no exception. There were a few hundred Golden Plover, Bar-tailed Godwit, Redshank, Greenshank, over a hundred Dunlin, Ringed Plover and quite a few Gulls.

A fab afternoon.


Mike said...

The Grey Plover shots are really nice, I love the lichens in the foreground.

Andrew said...

Beautiful photos!

Gyorgy Szimuly (Szimi) said...

Lovely shorebird day :) Too bad they are leaving the continental fields of Europe in winter. You are a lucky birder to be able to see them all year round. Nice report.