Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers at Twyford Lock

10th April 2014

Last year a pair of Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers bred at Twyford Lock near Bishops Stortford and this year the male is once again excavating a nest in a tall dead tree. It was now being seen fairly regularly, mainly in the mornings, and so I headed over there at about 10.00am and took up my position on the river back waiting for the bird to appear. I could hear the male calling occasionally but in the trees at the back and always out of view. so just a waiting game before he returned to continue his nest-building duties.

While I was waiting a pair of Grey Wagtails flew up the river with one carrying on across the horse paddocks, but the second bird alighting on a fence post just 15 yards way. I instantly started clicking away but the bird was obviously quite settled so I started edging my way forward. I eventually got within 10 yards of the bird allowing some great close-ups. By selecting a narrow depth of field I was able to blur out the background which providing a nice back-drop.

At that point the LSW returned to the tree but then flew off into a neighbouring tree and settled quite upright on one of the branches, looking totally out of character. He then returned to the nest tree and carried on the work of excavating this year's hole before flying off for a well-earned rest.

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