Eye to eye.

A short walk in the New Forest this afternoon became one of those stand-out moments. Walking among flowering Gorse bushes turning a corner I came face to face with this Fallow Buck.

After a few seconds of watching each other, I was hoping he would let me raise my camera before running off or running at me! Not to worry he just looked at me allowing me to photograph him before I backed away and he walked off.


Some more views of Tufted Ducks – these were on the old mill pond at Bishop’s Waltham near Winchester.

The drakes are black and white with a golden eye and sport a tuft. The hens are more camouflaged and brown in colour.

As kids, we called Tufted ducks Tufties.

On the water.

Another visit for an hour on a wet Friday morning to a local Lakeside park with the aim of watching the resident Grebes, it was nice to see 6 birds in 3 pairs so I am hopeful there will be some nests this year.

A local radio-controlled yacht group were sailing their pond yachts on one of the lakes, this quiet past-time does not conflict with the life on the water.

Tufted Ducks are smaller than the mallard. They have a small crest although you can not see it in my photographs.

Graylag geese seem very at home with the visitors and allow you to get close to them.

Good or not so good.

The grey squirrel was introduced into the UK in the 1870s from North America as an ornamental species to populate the grounds of stately homes. Introductions occurred until 1930. At this time the damage caused by the grey squirrel was recognised and it was made illegal to release a grey squirrel into the wild. Grey squirrels have rapidly spread and colonised much of mainland England with detriment to our wildlife, especially the native red squirrel, and tree species.

However, watching Grey squirrels is a pastime for many and despite their negative effect on native wildlife.

Birdwatching in the wet.

Some days when the weather is not good and rain prevails it is a real washout. Today was one of those days so I went for a short walk at a small local nature reserve not expecting to see much let alone take some photographs.

However, despite the rain, and fairly low light it was a successful nature walk.

On one of the small gravel pits were a number of Great-Crested Grebes which added a splash of welcome colour.

These grebes are well-known for their elaborate courtship dance, during which they rise out of the water and shakes their heads. During the breeding season, they have an impressive plume on their heads and orange ruff around their necks.

A number of Greylag geese were also in one of the pits. They are the largest and bulkiest of native wild geese found in the UK and Europe.

A Moorhen making a run for it back towards the water.

Coastal spring.

Down on the coast along Meon Shore and Titchfield Haven, spring is advancing. Birds are starting to pair up courtship is in the air. Soon the Brend Geese and the Sanderlings will be off to their breeding grounds. Other birds who breed on our shores will arrive Avocents have started to arrive and soon I expect to spot returning Common Terns.

Canada Geese are no native birds, having been introduced from North America some 300 years ago. After the Second World War, they spread across the UK. They are now found in large numbers. These birds do not migrate from the UK and in some areas are now considered a pest.

Cormorant and Little Greebe fishing.

Some regular birds on at the Haven.