Wednesday, 26 May 2010
Getting the Bird (Not)
This is Brandon Marsh, a local Wildlife Trust where, if you are really lucky you might catch sight of a kingfisher. Neither hubby nor I have ever seen one of these magical birds, but friends who are fishermen tell us that we had as good a chance as any of getting a sighting at Brandon, so off we trolled.
Needless to say we didn't see the wonderful iridescent blue-green flash of the kingfisher. That aside we did find an oasis of quiet in the marsh.
Cuckoos called to each other across the silence as we sat beside one of the pools, and while this is a call even we could recognise, there were bursts of birdsong all around us that were totally unfamiliar.
In and around the hides we met folks who were real experts, (or certainly appeared to be to us). Without exception they were laden with expensive cameras, 'scopes, and tripods, and kindly shared their know- how with us by pointing out species and behaviour they didn't want us to miss.
The only bird my non-specialised camera could capture was the stately swan that had obviously found a rich feeding spot because it was still lazily circling and dredging the waters in the same place when we left as when we had arrived two and a half hours earlier.
We might not have gained our optimistic objective of seeing the elusive kingfisher but we had a lovely afternoon where we discovered, not just a bit more of the beauty of natural world, but had caught sight of a world of folks who have such a deep appreciation of it that they spend a lot of time and money observing and recording what they love. It was reassuring to be in their company and know that they were so dedicated to the beautiful, vulnerable, and ever-changing population of the marsh.