Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Grebes Grebes Grebes Grebes!!

Exams are v v close and revision is v v boring. The only solution to the monotony was to zip to the Wetland as soon as the sun cleared all the pesky clouds away.

Wow was it a beautiful day. Far to beautiful to revise. Far to beautiful to sit in a hide. So, cross legged, I found a comfy piece of grass with a fine view of the Great Crested Grebes.

Talking to a few passer bys, apparently the tale of the grebe chicks is not so idilic as these pictures may suggest. Just 2 days ago there were 3. Herons? Kestrels? Gulls? Who knows. The good news is that the adults weren't going to let this last little chick out of their sight. Tucked up on mum's (or dads?!) back, his little zebra-stripped head would peep out comically from time to time.

So, when I arrived, just the one adult was in view - but not for long! From across the lake, the second appeared with a mighty catch. "Surely," thinks I, "that cant be for little stripy" - Oh but it was. Despite looking to be pretty much the same size as the chick, with a few deft flicks, the fish was upended and wriggled down into his tum.

After lunch, I got another little treat from the grebes. The adults spent a few minutes dancing with each other. Not quite to the extremes of the mating season, but tapping beaks flaring their displays. Smashing.

On a more photography based note - I was thinking today about a comment Linds made about my pictures to date. She pointed out that often I use very plain backgrounds of either water or sky (see my earlier gull photos or my little grebe portrait) and, whilst this may highlight a subject, the shots are very 2D. So, I hope I have improved a bit on this front today - I focused mainly on the triangular reed (seen below) to try and frame the grebes. Along with this, I was also conscious of the wind patterns across the water leading to different bands of colour - so I tried to use these for a bit more depth. Comments/Advice welcome!

(Ive also toyed a bit with this image. Its a bit over done with the reduce quality here on the blog, but I like the vivid colours.)

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