Redwing eating a Holly berry.

Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire, England in the mid 1980s.

The Redwing (Turdus iliacus) is a member of the Thrush family. They are winter visitors to Britain arriving in the autumn after breeding in northern regions of Europe and Asia. Wintering birds sometimes form loose flocks numbering up to 200 birds but I seem to remember this being a solitary bird. It’s feeding on a berry of a Holly (Ilex aquifolium) tree.

The photo was taken from a bedroom window so I was slightly higher than the bird but not enough for the angle to look odd. It was used in a field guide to garden wildlife and it was taken in a garden unlike some of my other photos used in the book.

A Redwing in a Holly tree.

Bohemian Waxwing at -30°C.

Throwback Thursday is a follow-up of sorts to yesterdays Wordless Wednesday post. Here’s a Bohemian Waxwing (Bombycilla garrulus) at -30°C.

Both birds were photographed in Saskatchewan, Canada in the winter. I’m always impressed by the way small birds survive winter temperatures.

Nowadays some digital cameras make a big deal about a freezeproof rating of -10°C. I find that rather humourous having shot film at -40°C and digital at -20°C.

I found a small flock of Bohemian Waxwings feeding along a fence line one morning. I briefly considered putting up a portable hide (blind) until I thought about how hard it would be to peg down given how frozen the field would be. In the end I followed them along the fence line for a while before leaving them to finish stripping the berries.

A Bohemian Waxwing at -30°C.

 

Feeding Whooper Swan.

One from the archives taken in Lancashire, England in the mid 1990s.

I was at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust Martin Mere reserve. There was a few Whooper Swans (Cygnus cygnus) close to one of the hides in the morning. With the nice light on the birds I spent some time shooting as wide a variety of images as possible.

I like the way the light is catching the drops of water on the birds head and neck as it feeds.

Portrait of a feeding Whooper Swan.

 

Bodies at rest/bodies in motion.

This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge is Bodies at rest/Bodies in motion.

My first thought was a flock of birds taking flight. That should be easy as I have lots of flocks of birds in my files. Well it didn’t quite work out as easy as I thought it would be. For example, every photo of Snow Geese taking flight I checked has all the birds in motion. I checked some of the wader (shorebirds) species I have on file. Most of those photos either had all the birds at rest or all the birds in motion.

Then I remembered some of the photos from when I was part of a small group surveying and recording an inland Gull roost on Hurleston Reservoir in south Cheshire. The photo below shows a section of the Black-headed Gulls moving to a different part of the reservoir with other birds staying in place on the water.

Black-headed Gull roost in winter.