The dikes in the southern marshy areas of Pitt Lake have numerous marked trails and are excellent for bird watching. Bird watching towers can be found along the dikes.
On Monday two of us visited the area to check for early arrivals. Our first sighting was a pair of Townsend's solitaire, unfortunately our only shot was just for the record, it won't be gracing these here pages but nevertheless a very promising start to the day.
Out in the marsh Sandhill cranes could be heard calling, a Rough-legged hawk hung in the air looking for prey and the numerous Marsh wrens were as ever being overly protective of their nests. An American bittern surprised us as it fed metres from the road but hid away frustrating our attempts to get a clear shot.
The day ended with this series of photographs that show a Ruby-crowned kinglet feeding off aphids.
If you look very closely on the cropped version you can actually see the insect itself. The bird fed for at least five minutes before flying off.
|The Ruby-crowned kinglet approaches the aphid.|
To capture these images a shutter speed of 1/800 at F7.1 at 400 ISO was employed. I could have shot with a higher shutter speed but I went for a little extra depth of field, the motion of the wings I think adds a little dynamism to the action,
|Success ! Our little friend grabs the hapless insect.|
|Cropped close-up of the kill!|
Despite not seeing too many birds (Townsend's solitaire aside) this series of the Kinglet made my day. Now home for the Manchester derby.