You may remember that I had hardly seen a bird at my pool hide these last two days. It was unbelievably quiet. I proved something to myself though this morning. The forenoon is by far the best time for bird activity at this particular site. As I walked towards the pool under cloudless blue sky, I immediately noticed the presence of birds, and lots of them. I got myself sorted as soon as I could because as soon as I got under cover, a Pipit was in front of me. Even as I struggled to erect the tripod the bird started to bathe. Eventually........, (more haste, less speed)........ I was snapping away. There are real contradictions when the sky is bright and sunny, more birds, as I have said, but the harsh shadows cast by the intense light makes good bird photography a real challenge. You have a nice subject there in front of you and it looks good through the viewfinder but the end result is usually really lacking in detail. You have to be very careful to try and get the bird in a pose that reflects the light to your advantage. But what a session and what great birds. At one point I didn't know where to look because there was a young Bunting on the rocks while a couple of Redpolls bathed beneath me. The Bunting was replaced in the next minute by this little immature Whitethroat. It perched on the rock and seemed to be watching the adult male Grey Wagtail bathing below.
I have only seen Redpoll a few times before, and once.......that was last week,at the pool, so when I caught sight of two, seemingly a pair I was very pleased to say the least. I think this is a female but to be honest, I am not certain if it's male or female.
Here is the Bunting which has fleshy gapes at the corners of the beak which is an indication that it is a young bird fledged this year. In another photograph there is an indication of yellow on the bird and when I have seen very young Reed Buntings they have quite a different pattern on the head. Therefore i am identifying this as a young Yellowhammer.
I really do enjoy seeing Meadow Pipits and they seem to enjoy a bath more than other species, nothing scientific here, just an observation, but they do come down to bathe very regularly and provide some good photo opportunities.