I finally returned to Rainham Marshes today, some nine months after my last visit. I’ve been waiting for a calm, sunny day for ideal bird photography conditions, but sadly such days have been few and far between recently. Today turned out to be perfect, with blue skies and barely a breath of wind.
My hope was that I might finally see some Bearded Tits among the reed beds but once again I was foiled – their calls were audible but they simply refused to come out into the open. Perhaps one day my luck will change….
All was not lost though as among the reeds and I had several opportunities to photograph a pair of Stonechats and a Reed Bunting. Naturally they kept their distance, but I decided to use the nearby reeds to frame some of my photos, rather than cropping in too heavily after shooting.
Later this afternoon I circled back to the visitor centre and found a flock of starlings chattering and preening in a nearby tree. This particular bird still looked pretty scruffy, but the light was picking up some of the rainbow of colours hidden in its plumage nicely.
Finally, I found a huddle of photographers loitering along one of the paths. I discovered they were waiting for the local Short Eared Owl to emerge from the long grass, so I joined them and was lucky enough to catch one in-flight photo before the light faded too much.
17 November 2019