Pat H and I decided to head down to Worth today despite the rather inclement weather forecast as he had never seen an Eleonora’s Falcon and I was hoping that it would get up and fly around in the potential 10-12 weather gap in the forecast.
We started well with the female Red-foot visible out on a post from the car park where that incredibly white 1st summer head glowed while a Hobby predictably perched just a few posts away.
The walk down was pleasant and it was certainly a few degrees warmer than yesterday but still grey and gloomy. The Ellie was perched up in the lee of the wood and not doing a lot so we spent our watching the Hobbies and Red-foot and chewing the ornithological fat with friends.
|Red-footed Falcon - Pat Hart|
Bang on cue the Ellie started to get fidgety as the sun attempted to break through and after a few practice sorties out over the pool it decided to put on a star performance from then on giving breath taking views down to just a few metres above our heads.
I have seen the species particularly well in Lesvos in the autumn, especially at the scenic Pithariou Monastery but nothing even close to what we experienced here. It happily snatched Damselflies from the air and munched them on the wing banking with languid flicks of those elastic wings. At times it was too close to get in the shot but somehow, even then I still got a pic or two!
|Eleonora’s Falcon - ridiculous!|
Looking west, a wall of black cloud was approaching and so Pat and I quite literally had walk away views of the Falcon as we started the slow stroll back. My first Black-tailed Skimmer and Variable Damselflies of the year was seen on the path and Little Ringed Plovers and Oystercatchers joined yesterday’s wader list on the scrapes and two Kestrels were added to the falcon list. What I did not notice yesterday was the Beaver felled tree at the corner of the woodland and one day I hope to see them I Kent given how well they are now doing.
The heavens opened as we got into the car with our lunch and we decided that chancing our luck any further was fairly futile given the weather forecast and hit the wet road back home.