Tuesday, 27 February 2018

My Annual Pilgrimage to Lemsford Springs

16th February 2018

A few hours to spare so time for my annual visit to Lemsford Springs. The reserve was looking superb as usual, although was unusually quiet with the waterfowl represented by just a couple of hybrid Mallards. In fact it was so quiet to start with that I found myself photographing one of the local rabbits, which at one point came so close that I couldn't get it all in.

The first bird to come along was this rather chirpy little Wren that was visiting the rotting piles of Watercress that had been raked out of the channels in search of insects..............

.....................which was quickly followed by this rather smart Grey Wagtail with the same idea, although also explored the shallows.

Up to four Green Sandpipers were present searching for their favourite freshwater shrimps. All of these birds are colour-ringed to monitor their return in subsequent years and a couple are fitted with satellite trackers to monitor their movements during the summer on their breeding grounds. Through the accuracy of this sytem it is possible to know which tree they breed in, in Norway or Finland.

But the star of the show today was the rather sedate Little Egret. One of the advantages of Lemsford is that, due to the sheltered surrounds, it has its own built-in reflection pool which can give some stunning results.

However, having strutted its stuff around the beds it decided to have a bath, so sat in the water!!

It held this positon for several minutes before it all kicked off, and it tried its best to get under the water to wet all its feathes before the ritual preen. What a great finale!!!

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