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The Parakeets of Abbey Wood

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Yes, that’s Abbey Wood on the outskirts on London and they have an abundance of wild Ring Necked Parakeets. Nobody really knows why and how, but they seem happy to be there. I was here before Christmas and it was very cold, they still seemed happy enough flying around. There are a few thoughts of how they became settled in the South East, including escaped captive birds and intentionally released, however, I personally think that the warmer climate that the UK is getting means they came here naturally. It’s not just this part of the South East where they can be found, they are appearing in many areas especially the South Coast. There has also been sightings in the Midlands too.

I wasn’t there to photograph the birds, but having a weekend away in London but as took the camera to get some shots. I was woken at about 6:30am on Saturday morning to the sound of a Woodpecker in full hammer mode on a nearby tree. So I grabbed the camera and headed out to find him. As you can see, I found him (quite easily, I just followed the noise). He was high up in a large tree, so couldn’t get a close up photo, but happy with what I got, remembering that I’d only just woke up. I find it hard to function for the first hour every day!

The sunrise light was great so I wandered around snapping a few photos of the Parakeets, again, not the best photos, but as mentioned, I wasn’t there to take the photos so didn’t really have a great deal of time to spend.

The last photo of the Blue Tit just reminded me that you don’t need a great super sharp photo for a photo to work. Whilst waiting about for the Parakeets to fly over (they didn’t) I saw this Blue Tit clinging to a far reached branch and it just made a perfect frame for a shot.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Pair of Parakeets - D7100, AF-S 300mm f/2.8 with TC17EII @ 500mm, f/5.6, ISO1000, 1/1250sec - {Flickr Link}
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Chiffchaff or Willow Warbler?

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I spotted a quick flash of Olive colour darting between the bushes and then it made an appearance at the Waterfall. As you can see, the Waterfall is now running at full flow as I have now cleaned it and the filters.

Normally, I’d say this is a Chiffchaff as it’s more common and normally has darker legs than the almost identical Willow Warbler. However, the Chiffchaff has a very distinctive song (which is what gives it it’s name) that I have not heard in the garden. I have however, heard a song similar to a Willow Warbler.

I will keep an eye and ear out to see if I can confirm it’s identity. I’ll be very happy if it turns out to be a Willow Warbler as they have an RSPB Amber status due to decline.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Chiffchaff - D7100, AF-S 300mm f/2.8 @ f/5.6, ISO400, 1/1000sec - {Flickr Link}

Garden Birds

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Spent some time in the Hide yesterday in the garden. Saw an abundance of birds including Gold Finches, Great Tits, Long Tailed Tits, House Sparrows, Blue Tits, Black Birds and even a visit from some Pheasants.

However, not all the ones actually came to the feeding area, as they were busy collecting twigs for nests so I didn’t manage to photograph everything.

Here is some of the ones I did manage to snap though. All shot using Aperture Priority with Auto-ISO configured with a minimum shutter speed of 1/1000sec.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Dunnock - D7100, AF-S 300mm f/2.8 @ f/4.5, ISO400, 1/1000sec - {Flickr Link}
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Moon is looking good tonight

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I’ve always been fascinated by the Moon, I think it’s something to do with knowing I’ll never get to go there but it’s something I can see and doesn’t really seem that far away.

Tonight it’s quite low in the sky and perfectly lit showing it’s huge craters. The fact that on a good night, we can see these craters with the naked human eye just begs belief on how vast they must be.

With a full moon just a few days ago, the current Moon Phase for tonight is Waning Gibbous at 94.4% illumination. Waning Gibbous is the term given to the Moon when it’s decreasing in illumination buy not enough to be a crescent (in other words, fading from Full Moon). Gibbous actually means Humped-Backed. For more information about the Moon Phases, check out http://fullmoonphases.com/.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
- {Flickr Link}

I was watching a Wren around the Pond this afternoon.

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A little Wren was jumping under the rocks and eating the bugs before deciding to jump into the Waterfall for a wash.

Normally, the Waterfall would be running a lot quicker, but as you can see, there’s a bit of blanket weed developed over the last week since the weather started to get warmer. I’m awaiting for some new filters to turn uo before cleaning it out. But the Wren doesn’t care, it was taking advantage of it.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Get Ready - D7100, AF-S 300mm f/2.8 with TC17EII @ 500mm, f/4.8, ISO1600, 1/1600sec - {Flickr Link}
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