Welcome to my birdwatching blog. This blog will contain stories about my bird watching trips, interesting bird news and other tales that may or may not be bird related. I want to make it useful to the avid birder as well as those who may only have a passing interest in bird watching. I enjoy photographing bird life, common and rare through a spotting scope, not that they always sit still long enough for me. Being on the outskirts of North East London, my reports will not only cover my local patch of Redbridge/Waltham Forest, but also dip into deepest Essex, Suffolk, Kent and Norfolk.

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

I love Rainham Marshes


You know that feeling you get when the ends of your fingers tingle? Well mine were ringing in my ears. It may well have been the lovely Valentine’s Day I spent with the missus in Sevenoaks at The Vine restaurant or it possibly was the fact that I had a few hours on Sunday to nip over to Rainham to a) try to boost the Wildgoose Chasers bird list total which seems to be lagging behind most other teams and b) test the 7d and Sigma 150-500mm in the field, together, for the first time – now that’s exciting. Well it is for me.

It was nice to bump into Tom Bell with his images of the Ring-necked Paras feeding off his hand. Brave man. I signed in with Howard and the reserve seemed pretty quiet people-wise; only bird action was a female Blackcap (list tick) in the artificial orchard (apples on sticks) by the centre. I also added Goldcrest, Stock Dove, Great Crested Grebe and Golden Plover to the year list but still can’t locate a GSW!

Lapwing, Golden Plover and Shoveler

Little Egret

Marsh Harrier

Mute Swan

It’s going to take time to work out the best way to handle this kit – the light was poor. Every camera has its foibles and the Canon 7d is no exception. Once I get around those and learn how to get the best out of the lens, then I think this will be a rather satisfying combination.

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