This is a difficult challenge from Lisa this week. The reason is that, like butterflies and dragonflies, there are many species that cause my heart to go all a flutter. There are a few that stand out, unfortunately I don’t have any images. For instance the European Bee-eater. Fond memories of this multi-coloured beauty from holidays to Greece and Spain. Or the Robin sized Red-flanked Bluetail from deep in the Siberian Taiga, this once near mythical bird is now an almost annual vagrant to these shores in autumn but still gets the pulse going if one is found nearby.
There are two families of bird that I really like, the waders and warblers.
Nearly all the warblers are spring migrants from sub-Sahara. Unlike the colourful New-World counterparts they are mostly brown jobs that like to skulk about but their songs lift the spirits after the long winter months. The Sedge Warbler inhabits the reedbeds of wet lands. It’s song a fast scratchy affair sounding like cha-cha-cha-chi chi-chi-chicka-chicka ending in a flourish as the bird rises from its oft hidden position to ‘parachute’ back down. It can also mimic phrases of other bird songs.
Waders are a diverse bunch and that, to me, is their attraction. Not all are found wading either. The Snipe above was photographed on the lawn of our previous home. This was March 2018 and the weather this week has been a carbon copy of then. I wonder if the new owners had any surprise visitors!
Some birds are always exciting to see, like the Barn Owl. Not uncommon but it’s usually out at night. We were fortunate where we used to live that there was a resident owl that at dusk hunted the fields opposite our old home.
The Waxwing is a thrill to see. This is a Scandinavian bird that in some years comes to the UK in big numbers, other years none. One of my earliest memories was being taken by my father to see a flock on our small holding back in the early 60’s. Who can’t be impressed by this beauty.
But it’s not just the birds, often it’s the place as well. To be somewhere special and see special birds is the icing on the cake. For me to wander about the wetlands in spring listening to those newly arrived warblers and watching the years first dragonflies when a graceful Marsh Harrier drifts by sends me home a happy bunny!
Check out Lisa’s latest challenge. https://oureyesopen.blog/2021/02/12/bird-weekly-photo-challenge-birds-you-love/