The title of today’s post may sound like the name of a lesser known 1960s pop band, but it nicely reflects the photos I’ve taken today! I swapped my wide-angle architecture lens for a much longer one this morning and headed for Rainham Marshes, somewhere I’ve been longing to return to for months.
My first port of call was the old cordite store, where I hoped I might see Rocky, the resident tame robin. Sure enough, he was waiting right by the entrance to the store and he’d brought a friend along too! As soon as I dug out some mealworms, Rocky flew straight to my hand and tucked in, perching on the tips of my fingers. Mrs Rocky though (it seems a logical assumption they’re Mr and Mrs as January is robin courting season) was more reticent. She was happy to eat anything I put on the ground or on top of nearby posts, but it took a lot of time and patience before she plucked up the courage to fly to my hand, grab a mealworm and return to a nearby tree to eat. I probably spent half an hour with the happy couple before leaving them a small pile of mealworms and continuing on my way.
The light today was very flat and far from inspiring. This made catching in flight shots very difficult, but I had more luck with birds in the various pools. The lapwings looked lovely in this soft light, showing the subtle shades of green in their plumage.
When I reached the final hide a fellow photographer pointed out a large flock of Snipe on the edge an island. I’ve never had much luck with these beautiful birds before and, to be honest, I would probably never have spotted these ones without help as their camouflage is astonishingly good! I also photographed a couple of lone birds away from the island, one of whom was doggedly flapping in the opposite direction to everyone else!
As I walked the final stretch, back to the visitor centre, I became away of a garrulous conversation going on in nearby bushes. I realised I was surrounded by what must have been a hundred or more sparrows, but I couldn’t see them. Patiently waiting on the path, they eventually began to emerge into the branches, and I photographed one before it flew away to grab some grub from the nearby feeding station.
12 January 2019