Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Starlingless Sunset and Backlit Buntings

Yesterday afternoon I picked up Bun from Seaton and we went to the Somerset Levels in the hope of seeing the magnificent Starling roost. First we went to Westhay Heath to dip the Firecrests, which we did very successfully. Then after phoning the RSPB Starling Hotline, we moved on to Shapwick Heath. This was where the Starlings had roosted the night before but on this night they didn't. A few large flocks flew over and that was that. They roosted somewhere to the north, probably Westhay, where we had come from earlier! I'd really love to see this spectacle but its quite a long way to drive to have a one in three chance of getting the right location. This was the second time we've failed to see them. We decided we will probably give it one more go this year. While we waited for the Starlings we amused ourselves taking a few photos of the fabulous sunset.

And a couple of photos from this morning's walk. I quite like the softness of these back-lit shots.

Female Reed Bunting

Female Cirl Bunting


Wilma said...

Love the way sunset grasses glow.

Karen Woolley said...

Thanks for commenting Wilma. I agree. It was seeing the glowing reeds that prompted me to take the photos.

Anonymous said...

Hi Karen, The real trick with the Starlings is to really go earlier in the year. Living much closer to the levels I have noticed that the roost sites are far more stable in Dec and early Jan. In Feb, there is always the risk that the large group split into smaller roosts and these become more mobile. That said it is always worth a visit as just about anything does and can happen. Of course the Bitterns and Marsh Harriers are likely to be more active now. Robin.

Karen Woolley said...

Thanks for the info Robin. I'll have to get up there in December then. May still try once more,like you say, "you never know!"

Ian Andrews said...

I've failed with the starlings here too but would have been chuffed with the reeds in the sunset picks.