This morning I left my comfort zone (only birding very locally this winter) and went over the border into Gloucestershire to try and get some shots of the Short Eared Owls that had been showing well at a set aside field.Some friends (Pete Walkden and Kat Everitt) had got some stunning shots but some time ago now.
I had two worries : Would I be too late to see them ? and Would it be too cold there for a wimp ? The forecast was for sunny dry weather but with a very cold wind blowing so to offset this threat I layered up including a double layer of thermal underwear.
Got there at 10.30 AM and parked up.I soon realised I might be in the wrong spot but a quick call to Kat Everitt soon put me right.At the correct spot a worry was there was only one birder there and he had been there since dawn and not seen a thing.By lunchtime I had had no luck and two locals I chatted to told me that it would appear they had left so as wintery showers were falling I left.
I did use the camera during my 3 hour stay.A couple of deer were at the back of a nearby field.
Rooks were a pain all morning because when movement caught my eye each time I hoped it was a SEO but no it was a damn Rook .
There were quite a few Red-legged Partridges about this one was sunning itself on a wall.
There were loads of Skylarks about.
Whilst I was sheltering in the car from the icy wind a Robin could see that I was upset and crying so it came close to try and cheer me up.Took this shot through the closed driver's side window.
Just before I left I thought I'd spotted a SEO on a distant wall but it wasn't.Not sure what it was probably a Common Buzzard.These chaps had fooled me many times.
Didn't really need any more shots of SEO's but they are so good to watch in action I would loved to have seen some again.Should have gone a couple of weeks ago.Took these shots in November 2011.