Yesterday on a bitterly cold day we took a trip to Blashford Lakes near Ringwood for some birdwatching. This is a new location for us, my son was told about how good it was but unfortunately for him he was not available to come with us but DH and I had a fantastic day (apart from me tripping over a bramble that was strung across a path about 3 inches off the ground like a tightrope and bruising both knees quite badly).
We saw at least 38 different bird species including some we don't see very often such as a firecrest, brambling, redpoll, siskin and nuthatch. We really should have made a list while we were there as we were trying to think of all the different species we saw last evening and have probably left some off the list. Most of the ducks and geese were too far away for my lens to cope with so I haven't got any good shots of those. When we got home my son said that I could have borrowed his long lens but I am quite glad I didn't take it as I might have damaged it when I fell over, I just managed to save my camera although the end of my lens has a tiny dent in it.
|This lake was partly frozen so not much bird activity to be seen|
|A general view of one of the lakes, ducks and geese too small to be seen|
|Included this one as I like the cloud pattern in the sky|
|The waterfowl were too far away for clear shots ...|
|but there were a lot of different species on the lakes|
I really loved the woodland hide, my goodness what a busy place that was, the birds were on and off the feeders there all the time. My photos aren't the best, the light wasn't fantastic and we were shooting through the glass windows of the hide but at least you get an idea of what a popular spot it was with the small birds.
|Redpoll, Siskin and Goldfinch|
|Siskins and Goldfinches|
|A cheeky squirrel came to join in!|
|Goldfinch and Blue Tit|
|Nuthatch and Blue Tit|
|Brambling, Great Tit and Goldfinch|
We will definitely be going back soon for another visit as we didn't have time to cover all of the reserve and next time we will take a flask of coffee and some sandwiches with us to help sustain us (especially if the weather is as bitterly cold as it was yesterday) as there are no refreshment facilities on site although we did find a rather splendid pub just down the road where we enjoyed a lovely lunch.
Birds we saw include: Firecrest, Canada Goose, Greylag Goose, Wigeon, Pintail, Tufted Duck, Pochard, Shoveller, Mallard, Coot, Cormorant, Black Headed Gull, Lesser Black Back Gull, Herring Gull, Greater Black Back Gull, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Magpie, Gadwall, Goosander, Dabchick, Siskin, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Brambling, Nuthatch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Redpoll, Dunnock, Blackbird, Nuthatch, Robin, Greater Spotted Woodpecker, Wren