Friday, 3 January 2014


As soon as I saw that there was a break in the stormy weather of late on Thursday morning I grabbed the camera and shot over again to Ice Station Draycote.It turned out to be a very frustrating trip because all the birds I wanted to get shots of were not playing ball and stayed a long way off.

Got to the Ice Station just after 10.00 AM and was very surprised at how busy the place was particularly as the drive there had been very quiet.As I climbed up to the Farborough bank path I was very soon surrounded by masses of bikes and trikes all brand new being ridden by very small children.It was the day to try out the Xmas presents.

From a little way down the path I spotted a small group of Goosanders about 70m out but despite waiting a while they didn't come any closer.

From the path I spotted the drake Smew which was in front of the sailing club.I walked round there and found it asleep about 100m out.It took ages to wake up but would not come any closer so I didn't improve much on last week's shots.

When at last it started to move closer a motor boat roared out from the sailing club and this happened.

Pretty poor shots but the first flight shots of a drake Smew I've taken.After a bite of lunch I headed down to the spit along the Farborough bank where I was told that my good friend the Great Northern Diver who had showed well earlier in the day had gone over to the far bank.A lot of birds were over there and I can only think that the very busy path had forced them to move over there.

Another bird that was even further away but was my first sighting was the female Long-tailed Duck.This is probably the worse ever shot taken of one.Can you see it ?

I was a broken man by this time so I decided to trundle back to the car and head home.Desperate to get shots of anything that was close.I took these shots.

A very frustrating day with some decent birds about but all miles away so no decent pics.That's failure for me.Still it was nice to get some fresh air on a nice day in fact it must be my first visit to Draycote in January when I wasn't cold.

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