29 October, 2008

Two-Day-Stay- Phssin 'n' Pheasant feedin

This entry is from my two-day-stay at my relatives in Bury st Edmunds, Suffolk. It gave me a great chance to take a look at the woodland birds and the local Pheasants.
I spread some seed on the garden lawn hoping for Pheasants when I came back, then I set out with my camera and borrowed 8-15x bins and headed for the woods behind the house. I then hid behind a tree and used the 'phsssing' method to get the birds to come to me, hopefully (for those who of you have no idea what the 'phssing method' is, it is a noise you can make that mimics the sound of a bird alarm call, according to Bill Oddie. Birds in the area, especially thrushes and warblers, will come and check you out, then wizz off when they see you are not a bird at all. This method gives you a vital second to identify the bird).

I don't think I had sat down for 30 seconds and I had already attracted a whole tit flock! Blueys, Great tits, Long tails, Coal tits, Goldcrests, Nuthatchs and even a possible illusive Lesser spotted Woody.
A fuzzy shot of a Great tit......

A little later and I could hear Redwings and a very quiet Blackbird, Wrens, Robins and lots of Rooks (as there was a rookery above me). I also got some entertainment from the local Squirrel that jumped and fell and climbed and probably snapped more twigs than a pig would if you plonked one in a tree.

A little while later and the birds had gone, all that was left was a pair of sqeaking Goldcrests and a Nuthatch, so I decided to leave. Now was the moment of truth, was there a Pheasant in the back garden waiting for me to photograph it.........yes! It was a beautiful male (named Henry by my Grandpa) and apparently, he is a frequent visitor to the garden. I crouched down on the grass slowly so I didn't scare him and took a few shots of him.
Coming in from the right......

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