17
Jul
14

A start on the heath

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It’s like being in a crowded room with everyone talking and amid the cacophony of noise you hear your own name. You pick it out as if it’s the only thing being said. It stands out from the background like a black silhouette on white,

I have been walking the heaths and searching this summer; searching diligently but to no avail, for a daytime roosting Nightjar. I’ve never seen one during daylight other than in flight. Great care has to be exercised not to wander from paths – the last thing in the world we want to do is disturb breeding nightjars or indeed other breeding birds.

I look at every likely log, post and branch I pass to see if that familiar shape leaps out at me. I thought I’d found one the other day as the form of a bird materialised on the end of a log. It took me an instant to recognise it was in fact a young fledgling Redstart. I stepped back to a reasonable distance to see if the parents came into feed as it was obviously quite young. In fact it started to hop about and find food itself. It appeared to be already independent.

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Redstart

Redstart 1

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