November 20, 2013 … long legs and dried mud

Suffering from withdrawal symptoms, I went looking for some feathered friends.


To my astonishment, the ponds near the bird hide on Gray’s Rd seemed to be drying up. Perhaps eighty percent of their area was now soft mud covered with bird footprints. The latter suggested to me that the process had been happening for some while and was not related to mere tidal action.


There was limited bird life about, with a few spur-winged plovers and a few pied stilts. The interesting thing about seeing the stilts on the mud is just how well they are named. Without the water to confuse the issue, they are seriously long legs.


I tip-toed out onto the mud which seemed firm enough, though it was covered with  some kind  of fibrous mat of drying weed. To my astonishment, a tiny fluffy chick scuttled from one of the reed-clumps and raced across to a more distant hiding place. I am not totally sure, but think it was a plover chick. Oddly, it was the stilts that then started harassing me, though they may have been protecting their habitat rather than the chick.


Since I am an advocate of minimal intrusion on bird habitats, I backed off and took my remaining images from a less threatening distance. A little further round the inlet, a flock of Royal spoonbills were enjoying a siesta, though every so often, a long black swan neck or a Canada goose would stick up like a periscope. The contrast between the blue water and the straw colour of the reeds was pleasing.

See you tomorrow.


About wysiwygpurple

I am a family man, a passionate amateur photographer and a retired academic . What's the purpose of this blog? Well in the first instance it provides me with a platform from which to resume writing, an activity I greatly enjoy. What will the blog be about? Anything that takes my fancy but it is likely to arise from things I see and experience, in my family, in my travels, or anything else I feel like. Each daily post will contain one or more images made the previous day. Sometimes the image will illustrate the points made in the prose, and sometimes the prose will attempt to interpret the image. What kind of images will they be? Always safe for work and family. Usually they will be representational, and sometimes they will be impressionistic or experimental.
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3 Responses to November 20, 2013 … long legs and dried mud

  1. Toya says:

    Love the wee chick 🙂

  2. There is a nest on the wee island on the right (looking from the hide). And yes they do seem to be drying up.

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