Thursday 17 November 2011

Racking them up

Last year I got to the then incredible total of 108 species on the patch. Untouchable, I thought, if I make a hundred I'll be lucky. I know I mentioned this only a couple of days ago but I've gone and added another one!

Firecrest in Bush Wood. The tick actually happened yesterday, but I was busy. I nipped into Bush Wood following a tip-off, not really expecting to find anything, it being a big wood and they being small birds, but it look less than two minutes. Did I have a camera with me? Ah. So today, in need of some air after wrestling with a recalcitrant regulatory capital system, I set off, armed, to Bush Wood. With some trepidation of course, it being the site of previous maltreatment, but it was a nice sunny day, and I felt pretty safe.

As before, I located the birds within five minutes, given away almost immediately by a host of squeaky dog-toy calls. Soon I had three birds flitting around my head between two large holly bushes. Bush Wood is mostly large holly bushes, so I'm not giving away much. Snappity snappity snap. It's relatively dark, and the birds are extremely active, so a high ISO was needed, in this case 1250. Can you tell, because I certainly couldn't? I reckon it's as good as ISO 400 on my last camera, which for most of you is an utterly meaningless comparison. Suffice to say it is amazing. Two years hence and I'll be moaning how awful the dark days of 2011 were, but for now, it's affording me opportunities that didn't exist even two years ago. Loving it. This is what coffee breaks are made for, though I think I actually ascribed it as a late lunch, which I ended up sacrificing in favour of these little beauties. Glad I did, as is my less-than-washboard-like tummy.


  1. Awesome pictures.

  2. Beauty, and great photos!

    I think I saw a flock of our firecrest analogues, kinglets, on our road today. There's really no other bird that is so tiny around here, except hummingbirds of course, and this isn't the first time I have seen them out and about at this time of year. Hopefully I will remember to bring my bins tomorrow and check them out more closely.

    By the way, thought you might be interested in this--

  3. They seem very obliging. You're right about not noticing the high ISO, really good results. What body do you now have?

  4. Lovely photos - they are really in great plumage aren't they?

  5. The more I look at your banner photo the more I love this set. Definitely one I would pay for.