Monday, 9 May 2016

Oily Fish Rays

Cycled over to RSPB Langford Lowfields today, pondering an internal question as I turned the pedals on the easy downwind stretch from Stapleford Wood to Collingham.

Why does vitamin D come from two totally different things; oily fish and sunshine?

It made me wonder if all our current scientific theories are wrong? Maybe mackerel are not fish after all, but silvery blue packages of pure sunlight? Or the sun emits rays of fish oil instead of photons?

What a poser! The world is all wrong!

Anyway, at Langford I was able to concentrate on the birds, and ignore such existential meanderings. THe dominant birds were the sand martins in the air, of which there were many, and various loudly squabbling canada geese on the water. But there was plenty else going on.

A tiny little gravel island out on the water was the focal point for most of the activity. On this little spit, barely larger than a decent sized car, oystercatcher, common terns, and various ducks including a very late pochard were all sitting or feeding in the shallows. Possibly the terns and the 'catchers were nesting; I hope so.

I decided to walk around the whole reed bed, and everywhere a shrill song caught my ear. I've been researching birdsong like mad, and have concluded it was almost certainly a sedge warbler; certainly it is an ideal habitat for them. A passing birdwatcher told me of a hobby he had watched, but it didn't show up for me. Lots of butterflies were about, and I'm glad that orange tips are having a good year again, after last spring's disaster.

Brimstone flew strongly around the hedgerow margins, and peacocks sunbathed out on the paths in large numbers. No damselflies yet though, although they've been reported elsewhere.



Bugs on a rush

Cowslip macro

First look at the island

All sorts in this shot; pochard, common tern, oystercatcher, tufted duck,

Tern takes to the air

Oystercatcher preening

Oysters in the sky

Female reed bunting

She gave a lovely view


  1. A very attractive female, nice photo. I'm seeing good numbers of Orange tip as well,
    more than I have ever seen,always on the move though.

  2. damsels are out here. Great shot of the Reed Bunting.

  3. Thank you very much! Today the rain is battering down so there is not a flutterer to be seen, and the birds are all looking very bedraggled

  4. Great shots of the reed bunting here Si, and the brimstones on the reeds look great too. I've got to get down to the river and see if I can spot more of them as I saw a good few down there last summer. Glad to hear the butterflies are about as well. - Tasha

  5. Beautiful photos. Thank you so much for sharing.