Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Perfect weather for......painting

Quite surprisingly and rather annoyingly the weather forecasters have got it right and it's been perfect weather for painting!
So I've been up a ladder but this has also led to me looking right up at times and in good weather in autumn this can reveal raptors. Not many but a low Osprey was most unexpected although Sparrowhawk and Goshawk were to be expected. Also a low Tree Pipit calling which looked like it may have been down on the ground nearby. Swifts are a still to be seen although the vast majority have moved off.
This morning I nipped off to Maridalen early on whilst the overnight dew had a chance to dry off the walls and had hoped to have a few raptors but was really too early in the day and had to make do with a single Sparrowhawk. There were few passerines and the Red-backed-Shrikes seem to have moved off with also fewer Whinchats, although Meadow Pipits and Chaffinches are getting more numerous and there were a few early Bramblings.

The Whooper Swan family showed better than previously and the young were flapping there wings and spending a lot of time preening to get rid of old juvenile downy feather but I would think there are still a number of weeks before they will take their first flight. The family is very wary this year and were out on the small pool which they bred on last year (has become even more overgrown this year) when I arrived but as soon as they spotted me they moved quickly off into the flooded forest where they quickly vanish.
on the small pool with a bit of wing flapping. This is the only open water here and is not large enough for flying practice. I didn't work out what happened ast year - whether they flew off the adjacent field or made the long, perilous and difficult walk to Maridalsvannet.
lots of preening
moving off after I had been spotted
formation swimming.
BWP gives 7 as the maximum clutch size recorded so this is clearly a large family and good work from the parents to have brought so many youngsters this close to fledging

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