Sunday, 23 April 2017

Common Crane

After seeing the Crane flying over Hillwell last week i managed to find it on the ground yesterday. Walking along the road to Brake i came across the Crane not in the ploughed field but in a marshy area 4 rigs away.

It was soon asleep and stayed like this for a good 20 mins before being disturbed by a couple of Ravens who came for a closer look

After preening it took off and headed straight towards me. By this time the wind had picked up to force 6 and the snow also started to fall

keeping the long telephoto steady was becoming a problem so i increased the ISO to 2000 and this gave me around 1/1000 second, just enough to get reasonable sharp photos

I think it may have flown over me had it not been for a flock of Greylag heading towards it so it veered off north landing 100 m north of its original position

As it came into land it disturbed a pair of Snipe which immediately took off

These views are the best i have had over the two year period that the bird has been present in the area. Migration has now picked up and a few days ago a Hermit Thrush was found on Noss, although officially the island was not open, so people had to find their own boats over that evening. The next day it had gone.

On the day i went to see the Crane a White Tailed Eagle flew over Hillwell and then disappeared to-date no one else has seen it. Elsewhere a Viking Gull, Glaucous and Iceland Gulls, Kestrel, Siskin, Goldcrest, Song Thrush , Chaffinch, Swallow and a number of Grey wagtails have arrived and been greeted by snow showers.

We headed over to Sandsayre as a pod of 6 Killer Whales had been heading south from Lerwick but we never saw them as they passed the back of Mousa, the sea was choppy and again the wind was strong. Still a number of Purple Sandpiper on the beach and divers further out

Birds on the day

Common Crane, Greylag, Skylark, Meadow Pipit, Moorhen, Tufted, Mallard, Wigeon, Oystercatcher, Snipe, Whimbrel, Lapwing, Purple sandpiper, Redshank, Curlew,  Raven, Hoodie, Redwing, Siskin, House Sparrow, Starling, Twite, Blackbird, Wren, Gannet, Herring gull, BH Gull, LBB, Red Throated Diver, Gt Northern Diver, Black Guillemot, Eider, Shag, Long Tailed duck, Rock Pipit

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