Wildfowl and Waterbirds in Lancashire

Wildfowl and waterbirds in Lancashire: Mere Sands Wood

The glorious spring weather tempted me into a foray for wildfowl and waterbirds over in Lancashire today. Although the weather was excellent, the hit rate for species was less so with no sign of the long staying bittern, very few waders at Martin Mere WWT and absolutely no avocets at Marshide RSPB reserve. Marshide has completely changed since I was last there a few years ago with much deeper water and no nesting islands for the avocets. Instead, there is a colony of 1000s of breeding black-geaded gulls and that’s about it. To cap it all you are looking directly into the sun at white birds on bright water! A nightmare for photography;  the RSPB seem to have lost it completely there and it will be a long while before I go there again. The day was salvaged at Mere Sands Wood where I had a great couple of hours photographing water birds, backlit against the bright, almost harsh, spring sunshine. The grebes at one point almost did their beautiful reed dance but in the end, they fizzled out and began to fish. Still, some nice images were obtained despite the Nikon 200-500mm coping rather poorly when used directly into the light. I suspect the large percentage of soft images was down to refraction caused by the multiple elements in the zoom lens.

moorhen swimming mere Sands Woodwildfowl & waterbirds | cootgoldeneye female

female goldeneye displaying

goldeneye male

coot swimming

wildfowl & waterbirdswildfowl & waterbirds

black-headed gull juveniilewildfowl & waterbirds | canada goose backlitr

great crested grebe Mere Sands Woodgreat crested grebe Mere Sands Wood

great crested grebe backlit

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