Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Down in the rushes

So, this little gem: Mystery pattern and all fluffy too, but who? This richly marked bird is amazing, but what is it?

Great guesses from you all: young fluffballs of blackheaded gull, capercaillie, lapwing, dottrel, osyercatcher, red grouse, redshank and.....snipe! This is indeed a totally gorgeous young snipe chick, and check out his rich cryptic markings, they are its ticket to staying camouflaged and un-eaten! The last one I saw was also in a quiet marshy corner, in 2015.

I only spotted this marvel by pure chance as I walked through a field and up jumped the mum from my feet. A quick scan of the ground right at my feet revealed this little gem - can someone can age it from the length of its bill please? I turned to leave and stopped abruptly again to change direction slightly; can you see why?