Monday, June 14, 2010

Bird's Eye View


Over the years I've spent a lot of time staring up into the sky to watch kestrels, but a walk along the cliffs south of Dawdon on the Durham coast at the weekend provided a wonderful opportunity to look down on one for a change.


We were standing almost directly behind it, on the edge of the cliff, and it was so intent at hunting something in the grass on a ledge on the cliff face that it ignored us, so we could watch every minute adjustment of its feathers as to effortlessly held position in a stiff north-easterly breeze.

Eventually it lowered its talons and stooped on its prey, carrying it off to its nest site further along the coast.

12 comments:

  1. Great shots from a unique perspective. Thanks for posting them. :)

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  2. Kestrels may be a lot smaller than many birds of prey but they're beautiful birds. Like you Phil, I've only ever seen them from below before so it's lovely to get a close-up view of it from above. Its markings are wonderful.

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  3. What a wonderful experience. Great shots.

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  4. Thanks Frank, this is always a great spot for watching kestrels but this was the first time I'd seen them from this angle...

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  5. Brilliant Phil. Not often we see the patterns on top of the wings.

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  6. Hi Lesley, I'm always surprised at how small they are when you see them perched .... if they didn't hunt by hovering they'd be easy to overlook..

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  7. Hi John,
    I wish I'd had a proper telephoto lens with me - I'd gone there to photograph butterflies, so this was with a 180mm. macro lens

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  8. Thanks Threadspider, these cliffs are a good spot for watching fulmars too -

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  9. Hi John, it really is a beautifully mottled pattern...

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  10. Cracking set of shots Phil. Great to be there right with him while he hunts.

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  11. Hi Keith, I never tire of watching the precise control they have over flight - truely wonderful..

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