Tuesday, 25 October 2016


Richard had phoned on the Wednesday to say he would like to visit his local patch and have a look at his Little Owl Sites on the Thursday so I decided to have another visit to Cossington Meadows and the Glossy Ibis and then head to Rutland Water after this. After doing all my jobs I managed to get away from home at 12.45 hrs and headed for Cossington, parked in the recreation ground car  park and headed out across the fields. On entering the field where Rectory Marsh is situated I could see the Ibis immediately, but also about half a dozen people situated about 30 metres from where the bird was feeding on the bank. I took some record shots from the gate and then walked up towards the corner of the pool, here again I took a few shots. I decided to stay on my side of the pool as to join the other people, I would have to go back to the car and return to the roadside parking and then walk across two fields. So I decided to move slightly closer to the bird but not do as the gent last week and disturb it. I moved slowly along the footpath , I in fact went well away to the right of the path away from the pool and then walked slowly towards the bird. It soon became evident that I would be better to move back towards the gate. Where the bird was feeding was well screened by reeds on my side of the pool and as I didn't want to move any closer towards the bird where I could see over the reeds but then more than likely disturb it, I moved back towards the gate where I could move closer to the side of the pool and get some images. It was much easier last week as the bird was feeding in the water but this week was the bulk of the time on the bank and being screened by the reeds, perhaps could have done with the gent from last week to flush it out from in the reeds and out into the water. I was on site with the bird for about 30 minutes and then got on my way to Rutland Water.

I arrived at Rutland at 15.00 hrs and after a quick chat with David at reception who told me the stars of the day were 12 Whooper Swans that were visible from Fieldfare Hide on the South Arm and another six were on the North Arm. He followed this with its not worth going to Fieldfare as they are about 1000 metres away and even with a scope difficult to see.

So I headed for the Lagoons heading for Lagoon 4 initially hoping again for the Peregrine but again a blank, one gent said he had seen it in the morning but it was nowhere to be seen. I then visited Plover Hide and then onto Bittern Hide in case the Bearded Tits had returned, talking with the couple in the hide they had been several times trying to find them over the last couple of weeks and not seen a thing so I headed for Shoveler Hide. The weather had taken a turn for the worse after leaving Cossington and had become very cloudy and windy. After a time in Shoveler and seeing some birds I then visited Buzzard and Crake Hides, on entering Crake Hide I though I felt a few spots of rain, when inside it absolutely poured with rain and I was stuck for about 20 minutes until it stopped and I then quickly headed for the car park and hopefully some Little Owls but not holding my breath with the weather as it had turned out. 

I passed the normal Little Owl Sites on my return journey with the idea of having tea at site 9. On arriving I met up with Richard who had seen two Little Owls at the site, one in the nest hole and one on a fence post, by the time we had our initial chat, only one was visible in the nest hole . From here I passed the other sites on my way home and saw a bird sitting on the RSJ at Site  No. 6 but this was the last bird I saw and the light was going so I headed for home.  

This weeks post unfortunately  are all long shots, not by choice but due to the birds not doing what I required of them, so I apologise on behalf of both the birds and me for any lack of quality. 

I have just read on our local bird site notes {LROS} that some idiots have again been approaching much to close to the Ibis and flushing it, this is so unfair to the genuine people who are turning up for images of the bird or just to see. it


23 rd October.

Glossy Ibis.
This image taken from the gate, a distance of 120 metres to the bird, a bit more color  showing on the bird but it needed to get itself at a better angle to the sun.

The bird entered the water for the one and only time during in my visit, but the sun was to the left of this image. 

At last we start to get some of the color of the bird. This was after my walk to try and get closer and my return to get a clearer view. The remaining images are all from this area and over a distance of 80 metres. 

And at last the full sheen, sun and bird in the correct place. Can't be said the same for the reeds. 

I found it difficult to get a clear shot through the reeds as the bird kept disappearing either into them or with some partially covering it.

But at least I managed some images showing the reason for the name as "Glossy."



Curlew, Shoveler Hide, Lagoon 3.

This bird in an area that has become visible due to the reed cutting, image taken over a distance of 74 metres.

Cormorant and Great White Egret, Shoveler Hide, Lagoon 3.

Since my last visit a considerable amount of reed cutting has taken place. Previously this Island was screened by the reeds on the Island in front. These images are at 170 metres.
You get some idea as to the height of the reeds having been cut to the shore line behind the island.

Stood in the middle of the birds was this G W E, having just finished preening. 

It then decided to go for a fishing session.

But then decided to fly by the Hide but at a reasonable distance away unfortunately and headed towards Buzzard Hide.  

After this I visited Buzzard Hide but could not see the bird anywhere.

Wigeon Duck, Buzzard Hide.

Wigeon are starting to turn up at the Reservoir in reasonable numbers and over the next few weeks will really be with us in very large numbers.

Juvenile Great Crested Grebe, Buzzard Hide.

Seems to have been a successful year for the Grebes seeing a reasonable number of Juveniles. 

Cock Pheasant, between Little Owl Sites Nos. 5 and 8.

This bird sat on top of the hedge at the side of the road and just couldn't  resist stopping and taking this image. 

White Cock Pheasant.

Unfortunate color for the bird on a shooting estate.

Having checked this post, it is perfect on my original as working on, but when published capital letters some in blue have appeared and I seem unable to get rid of this.  SORRY!! 

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed the images as much as I did in the getting of them.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016


Richard had phoned me on the Thursday morning to ask if it would be alright for us to visit Brandon Marsh in the afternoon instead of visiting Rutland Water, it appears that reasonable numbers of Kingfishers are being seen on site, so what more of an incentive is required. My answer was as your driving its your choice. So  Richard arrived at 12.45 hrs and said, how do you fancy going to Cossington Meadows, the Glossy Ibis is still on Rectory Marsh, we can park just across the road and be with it in five minutes, my initial thoughts were we could waste a lot of time again and miss out on the Brandon Marsh visit, we seem to be getting so many conflicting reports as to where the bird is feeding. So we got on our way to Cossington, parked in the Sports ground car park and within a few minutes went through the gate into the field where sat on the far side of the pool was the Glossy Ibis, we took a few long distance record shots so to be sure we had something before we attempted to get a little closer, the light we found to be awful and were both changing settings to try to get some of the birds coloring. Walking very steadily we crossed on the footpath, stopping and waiting several times so as not to disturb the bird before arriving at the far side of the field. We waited here for a while and took a few more images but the bird kept walking behind the small island it was on, however it eventually came out and then flew almost towards us, it looked as if it was going to pass us by and then turned and landed to the front of us. Unfortunately it was partially hidden by reeds but in time it moved into a clear area where we stood a better chance of an image. After a short time another couple appeared through the gate at the far end of the pool and proceeded towards us, looking through the bins they had obviously seen the Ibis and the gent had a large scope, but they just carried on getting closer to the bird. The gent then walked along the bank carrying his scope with the tripod at the ready until he was close to the bird, put the scope down and of course the bird  flew away, its a miracle it had not gone before, he looked amazed that the bird had gone, what a pair of idiots. The bird landed on the far side of the pool  and buried itself into the reeds.      

After this we headed back to the car park, muttering about the idiot with his scope, a large scope means you have no need to get close. 

We then got underway and headed towards Brandon Marsh, a new area for us both to visit, this was more a scouting visit. The staff on our arrival were very helpful showing us all the best spots for Kingfisher and providing us with a map each. We visited the bulk of the reserve and met up with a few of the locals who all said it was a quite time of the year and again told us the best places to visit later on. One also said it gets very wet near to some of the hides and he at times visits wearing waders. I don't think this will happen with us.

13 th October.

Glossy Ibis.

This is the position the bird was in when we first came through the gate and into the field at Rectory Marsh. This is an area of a small island well covered with reeds that the bird kept disappearing into, so we took a few safety images just in case it decided to go AWOL. At this point the bird was about 120 metres away from us.

By this image it had moved into a slightly clearer area so more record shots. We had moved to about 90 metres from the bird also.

It then moved out onto a spur on the island, no closer but made worse by what light we had got being behind the bird so we had white water.  

It then suddenly took off and headed towards us initially, in fact if it had remained on its original course it would have flown over us, it then turned very slightly away. 

And then turned back. 

And then as much as to say, Ahh your over in that direction.  

Turned and headed towards us and landed behind the reeds to the edge of the pool. 

Unfortunately these reeds kept getting in the way, as you can see from the tail of the bird. 

But it did get into a clear area occasionally, here with a dew drop.  

Then a quick preen, so the bird was relaxed and we were causing it no problems. We just stopped in the same position and shot away.

 It then walked to the left a small amount.

Feeding as it made its way around the pools edge. 

It then turned towards us, took one look. 

And turned to the right and started to move away from us. This was when the idiot turned up and walked up towards the bird and it flew away.

Apart from the couple disturbing the bird, this was a most enjoyable time with a really stunning bird. Just a shame the light was not better.


13th October.  

After the poor light at Cossington Meadows, by the time we arrived at Brandon Marsh, the sun was shining but the wind had got up. We spent most of the time on site having a walk about.

Pair of Mute Swans with five Juveniles. Jon Baldwin Hide. East Marsh Pool.

 These suddenly appeared from under the trees on the far side of the pool. 

Adult Male leading the line.  

Female Shoveler Duck heading towards the hide.  

Male Shoveler Duck, East Marsh Hide. 

Unknown Flower with Unknown Fly. Between East Marsh Hide and Carlton Hide.

I have no idea at all to the flower but it was only about 12 mm across so as you can see the fly is very small but also appears to be unusual with the flat back. 

Grey Heron landing. Teal Pool Hide.

This bird suddenly flew in out of the sun so difficult to get a decent image.

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed the images as much as I did in the getting of them. 

Wednesday, 12 October 2016


As it was my turn to drive, we decided to visit some of the Little Owl sites on our outward journey but mainly to head for the Lyndon Centre and have a trip around the Hides without the Ospreys being on site and tending to take all the attention. On our outbound journey we saw a Little Owl at Site No. 6, sat on its usual R.S.J. 

We arrived at Lyndon to find only one car in the car park and headed for Teal Hide, where not much was seen and so then headed down towards Waderscrape calling at all the Hides on the way down but mainly looking for Dragonflies as we are getting towards the end of the season.

Calling in at Deep Water Hide and again seeing very little we carried on down to Tufted Duck Hide and again we only saw a few Mallard, however in the area of the hide we had a concentration of Hawker Dragonflies in an  area that was shielded from the wind that was starting to blow a bit harder so we spent some time getting a few images and then headed for Waderscrape Hide, this is open again after all the screens and computers have been returned back to the centre until we commence duties next Spring with the return of the Ospreys. We met up with a gent in the hide who had spotted Green Sandpipers and other birds but on the other side of the bay using his scope so we headed for our favourite hide, Shallow Water and again looking for Dragonflies on our way down.

We were the only visitors in the Hide and though we saw nothing unusual managed some images of a few birds, and after about an hour in the Hide we headed back towards the car park for a trip around our Little Owl sites. We soon got underway and eventually saw a bird in the nesthole at Site 9. The following day Richards phoned me to say when looking at his images he had found we had another bird behind the bird in the entrance, so we finished up with a three owl day.

Richard and myself talked again on Monday the 10th morning and he asked if I had been out, he had been out owling on the Sunday. I said I was hoping to get out in the afternoon and visit Cossington Meadows as a Glossy Ibis was on site and was reported as being on Swan Meadows, this is where the Short Eared Owls were last Winter. Richard phoned me at about 12.30 hrs to say he had just arrived at Cossington and I said I would be with him as soon as possible, I still had some shopping to do. I arrived at about 14.00 hrs and walked reasonably quickly down the site but no sign of the Ibis or Richard at Swan Meadow so I carried on down the site and eventually found him with some people between Tern and Upper Marsh Pools, here they has seen some Jack Snipe through the Gents scope, very difficult to find with the bins. As we had both seen a reasonable number of Dragonflies in the area but no sign of the illusive Ibis, we had a couple of hours with the Dragons.  After this we walked back to the cars and Richard was on his way whilst I took my boots of when suddenly the gent who took the photo of me with the Robin in my hand eating the biscuit turned up. Asked what I had come for and told me he had been getting images of the Glossy Ibis in Swan Meadow, it was apparently out in the middle of the field and he had gone out after it, this is something we wouldn't have done in any case even if we had seen  the bird.    

The Header is an image I took last year at a small Lake near Heather of an Emperor Dragonfly, and have been trying to replicate it through the Summer but have not got any flying images so far, the Dragons if flying are flying away from us, not alongside us.

6th October.

Migrant Hawker, Male, Outside Tufted Duck Hide.

We saw a couple walking back towards the Car Park who said they had seen Dragonflies by Tufted Hide. We spent a reasonable amount of time trying for the images and waiting for them to land. Small amount of damage to its wing. 

Migrant Hawker, Male, Near Tufted Duck Hide.

This one appears to have perfect wings. 

Migrant Hawker, Male, Near Waderscrape Hide.

This one has an enormous section of wing missing but flew away perfectly. Imagine what it would be like to be on a plane with going on for 15% of its wing missing.????  

White Lipped Snail, Near Shallow Water Hide.

Different coloured shell to last weeks. 

Tufted Duck, Teal Hide.

Not so many of these ducks in this section of the South Arm of the Reservoir as on the Lagoons at Egleton. 

Greylag Goose, Shallow Water Hide.

Lovely goose enjoying the ooze to the front of the hide, the water level in Manton Bay is really low at the moment but soon fill up in the Winter. 

Redshank, Shallow Water Hide.

Just in the shallows out in the bay, we decided that you could probably walk across the bay with a pair of wellies on, but we then remembered the stream course in the middle.!!!

Cormorant on the Osprey Nest. Shallow Water Hide.

Have put the cameras on a few times during the day and in the evening, Cormorants on the nest most of the time. During the day a pair of Egyptian Geese are sometimes in residence.  

Black Headed Gull, Shallow Water Hide.

Not sure as to what it was collecting. A shot of approx 75 metres.

Not sure as to what the bird is doing in this image. 

Lapwing, Shallow Water Hide.

This bird was feeding in the waters edge. Not as many at Lyndon  as at Egleton. 

Another that ventured out of the water and up towards the hide but still not that close. 

The bird then flew, I think this is a male due to the round end to the wing. 
Not my best effort unfortunately. 

Hebridean Sheep.

These are the sheep I had previously got the breed wrong. After checking with Sarah at the Volunteer Centre she tells me they are Hebrideans.

Opposite to the Normal,

the "WHITE" sheep of the family. 

This is a small flock just below the Lyndon Centre all very interested in us. 

Thank you Sarah for the Breed.


Little Owl Site No. 6.

We saw this bird on our outward journey, nice to see its returned to what we think is its Winter quarters. We are sure it Over Winters with the cows in the Barn, nice and warm on a cold Winters night sat above the cattle. 

Little Owl Site No.9.

We sat and had half our tea at this site, Richard on one of his images could see a second bird behind the bird to the front. Very difficult with the sun as it is and it had also become very windy.

10th October.

Common Darter Dragonfly.

Both Darters and Hawkers were around in reasonable numbers.

Red Admiral Butterfly.

This year even though they seem late, all the ones we are seeing are in beautiful condition. 

This one was with several other on some pipes that had been put at the side of a ditch.

Common Darter.

This one on one of the direction signs around the reserve.

Cropped version of the above.

This on a log seat down by the River Soar.

Grey Heron, Tern Pool.

A rather long distance image of the bird sitting on a post in the pool having a good old scratch.

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed them as much as I did in the getting of them.

About Me;

Titus White:
Hi I am Richard Peglers friend Titus White, and those who follow Richards posts will understand the name and reason for it. I have been birding with Richard for 3 years and a volunteer at Rutland Water on the Osprey Project for 2 years. My early images were taken on a Nikon D80 with a 70 - 200mm lens. I updated the lens to a 70 - 300mm VR lens but still was not happy with the results. Eventually when Nikon announced the D7100 I decided to change so upgraded the camera and also invested in a Sigma 50 - 500mm lens.
I first met Richard through Arthur Costello as I was having the occasional visit from Little Owls on our land. We eventually found the Little Owls through another contact about 100 metres away. Photo's will follow on future posts.
I have recently upgraded my camera to full frame, this is a challenge I am at the moment enjoying trying to get the best out of the beast.
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