Saturday 26 June 2021

2 Cuckoos on patch

An unexpectedly productive late afternoon / evening! I'd hoped to escape work a bit earlier than I did; it's the perfect time of year for some dragonfly pics. Lower Bruckland Ponds (mostly private land, but accessible with a ticket) has a large number of Scarce Chasers this year, surely triple figures. With a supporting cast of Emperors, Four-spotted Chasers, Black-tailed Skimmers, hawker sp, Common Darters etc, it's a fantastic site.

An unexpected sighting was a Cuckoo... Dad first spotted it whilst I was looking at a Little Grebe; it was distant and he was expecting it to be a Sparrowhawk but took a couple of snaps none-the-less. A quick look at the screen and an expletive later, he realised it was a Cuckoo! He's having a good run with Cuckoos, after finding one last summer in Colyton too. We had a good search, but anyone who knows the layout at the ponds will realise how difficult this is with something like a Cuckoo. Needle in a haystack springs to mind. I did eventually see it after some thorough searching, a lucky glimpse of it in flight gave away its (temporary) position, and it eventually flew further inland. I took a pic of it at long (long, long) range, and I'll include it at the bottom of this post for your amusement.

On to Seaton Marshes where there were reports of a seemingly easier Cuckoo, but it didn't show for the first 45 mins or so. We did get lucky with this one in the end, I saw it flying towards us so we played statues, and then it perched up pretty close. The image is a bit busy as I was positioned behind some vegetation and didn't want to move & frighten it, but nice to get good views of a non-juv Cuckoo! Pics taken with my smaller 'insect' lens rather than my birding lens (unfortunately).

Seaton Marshes bird

Seaton Marshes bird

Lower Bruckland bird...