Thursday, 1 July 2010

New Forest birding Day 1 - part 2

Having spent the morning meandering over the heathland, the hot weather drove our leader (Jane) to find shade for the hottest part of the day. Late June in the afternoon isn't the best time in the world for birding generally, nevertheless we picked up some nice woodland birds including Great-spotted Woodpecker, Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Treecreeper.
The shady canopy was a blessing!
In this particular area Birch seemed to be the dominant tree.
You might think I'm mad, but I was really chuffed to get a photo of this usually shy bird, the Stock Dove. They breed in wooded areas but generally it's hard to get close looks at this bird. The usual sight of them is of distant flying birds! This particular one was serenading us with is monotonous but soothing song.
Even the ponies were finding places to stay out of the sun!
I liked these sun kissed sculptured trunks.
The graceful Foxglove is a feature throughout the Forest.

After dropping off our 'stuff' at the Hotel B&B, and a delicious dinner at the Beaulieu Road Station pub, we headed for heathland again for some evening birding.

Watching the evening sunlight across the heath was a beautiful way to end the day.
We were hoping to see an heathland specialist here (the Dartford Warbler). We had no luck and we all wondered whether the harsh winter had taken it's toll on the population of this bird in Britain. Only time will tell.

As the sun went down, our target bird was the enigmatic Nightjar. There were no real sightings during the evening but some of us heard distant 'churring' and apparently, I nearly stepped on one in the dark going back to our cars!!!
The next two shots are slightly out of sequence, sorry! Just a couple of photos of the inevitable ponies grazing peacefully.

As the sun set we slowly made our way back to the cars.
My final shot of the day was the moon rising up through the Forest trees.


TonyC said...

Hi Jen, looks like it was a good trip. Please remember me to the BOC crowd.

Eve said...

You really must watch your step Jenny! Well, I wish it had been a better trip for birds but as long as you had a good time! It's amazing but your moom looks the same in England as it does here in the US!!!
hahaha! ;-)Beautiful photo!

Kelly said... take the coolest trips!! This place is beautiful. Loved the photo of the close-up of the horse--the white against the green is gorgeous, and your moon is spectacular!

Rural Rambler said...

Good Morning Jen! The moon picture is stunning! Enlarged, whoa!!! I always love to see horses and these have been reminding me of Thelwell's Ponies, especially the white one you posted in this blog post. I have a small collection of his books that CH gave to me waaaaaay back in the day. The Foxglove is so pretty. I could have just hung out in that beautiful shade :)

Chris said...

Hi Jen,
Wow it looks like a very impressive birding trip, but I was surprised that you almost do not present any birds pictures ;-) But I have to say that your pictures are beautiful, especially the last three ones which have a beautiful atmosphere... Have a nice week end.

The Giraffe Head Tree said...

Oh, my heavens...this post is a thing of beauty from beginning to end. The ponies are striking, and I confess they might have captured my attention more than the birds even. And those trees! Oh! Wild foxglove? I'm so envious! I'm stunned by this post - glorious it is! I want to come birding with you guys!

Jenny said...

Hi Tony, it was a great weekend, (two more posts to go Ithink). I will remember you to the BOC gang.

Hi Evie, the next post will have some birds in it. I'd be a wee bit worried if it wasn't the same moon! (-:

Hi Kelly, I'd say you take some pretty special trips too! (-: Those near white horses are lovely, specially that one with the evening light on it.

Hi Pix, I don't know about Thelwell, I'll have to google him? We were very glad to be hanging out in that cool shade that afternoon!

Hi Chris, there will be birds in the next post, promise! (-:
Have a great weekend yourself!

Hi Debs, well if you ever get across the puddle to England, I'd love to take you birding, also with the BOC bunch. Glad you're enjoying the posts. More to come from the Forest shortly.

The Early Birder said...

Hi Jen, thanks for sharing your day in the New Forest. They say 'only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun'! I've been glad of the woodland shade as well.
BTW No sightings of Dartfords for me either....not good news.

Anonymous said...

You have made some really nice shots here Jen, the second Foxglove and the sunset ones and that last one is really special.

Jenny said...

Hi Frank, I think we'd all have gone mad if we hadn't found some shade that day (we're not used to it are we!). I'll have to visit some fav Dartford spot soon to try and see the bird this year!

Hi Roy, yes, I like that Foxglove shot too, the sun was nicely dappled there.

Mary said...

That moon shot is spectacular! I love those ponies wandering around. I think your sun kisssed tree trunks look like the antlers of a giant antelope :-) Lovely foxglove and I like doves, too. Sometimes what seems the most "common" isn't necessarily the easiest to photograph, so getting a shot of something you like is great.