12 June 2015

England 2015 #5

My last batch of photos from England..................

At the harbour in Saehouses there was a flock of Common Eider................a beautiful duck that compares to any we get in east Asia.

A bit difficult to get the exposure right though...................

A very entertaining bird especially with their Frankie Howerd like calling..............

Also on the coast nearby were Stonechat, Rock Pipit, Linnet and Common/Sandwich Tern fishing just offshore..............

We stayed one night in Newcastle, I had garduated uni there 25 years ago. A bit of a weird time walking around the city, a lot had changed. There were even more Kittiwakes nesting on buildings than I remember. I didn't have a decent camera with me, these were taken with a compact.

I visited various bird reserves across northern England but got hardly any decent photos. Birds always seemed to be further away than in Japan and the light was usually marginal, I'm sure good photos are possible of course but on a fleeting visit like mine I was grateful for the tame birds on the Farnes.

I saw Avocets in no less than five locations in Lancashire, Merseyside. Yorkshire and Humberside. This one was at Leighton Moss.............

Other noteworthy birds on my travels included Marsh Harrier, Little Egret, Cettis Warbler and lots of Gadwall.

In Preston I had one more afternoon with the Common Terns................

As I said a couple of posts ago, terns were the bird(s) of the trip by far............

Birds of interest near Preston included Lesser Whitethroat, a flock of Dunlin/Ringed Plover. Common Buzzard, Nuthatch, Sand Martin, Corn Bunting, Tree Sparrow and the usual common estuary stuff like Shelduck and Oystercatcher.

Thanks to my father for driving us around and also my old friends Jon, Simon and Alban.

It would have been nice to meet up with various bloggers who comment here sometimes and who live near Preston but alas I had absolutely no free time. My only visits to the Fylde where to see my 89 year old grandmother and I only made it up the Ribble twice. Hectic.

Food shopping in motorway service stations in England is amazing compared to Japan. Wow. Pub food is nice but way too heavy. Booths, even in Penwortham, is better than any supermarket in Japan. People drive too fast in England. The cellular phone network in England is terrible. In Seahouses I couldn't even get a signal, I only reliably hit 3G in central Newcastle and Liverpool....................

I could go on.


  1. These are beautiful Tern flight shots and also the courtship shots. The male Eider is a beautiful duck adn I love the noise they make.

    1. They sound like someone from a Carry-on movie...................

  2. Glad you enjoyed your visit to "the old country" even if it was a bit hectic. Please give my regards to Alban.

    1. Will do next time I see him, whenever that will be!

  3. Glad you like the terns, they offer something a bit different on the docks and are always worth bobbing for a look.
    I had no problems with my mobile in Seahouses, even got txts while on the boat around the islands...Wifey on the other hand - wasn't amused! Although I have to say I find most people drive to slow here especially when they're in front of me and there's birds to be seen!!!
    Looking forward to your far eastern exploits again now



    1. Hi David, I had a Vodafone sim card in a Samsung phone made specifically for a Japanese network so I suppose there could have been some issues there, perhaps i should have researched a bit and found a beter network than Vodafone.

      Shame I couldn't make it to Martonmere. Next time, next time.............

  4. Eider is rare on the Great Lakes in winter. The only time I can reliably see them is when I vist the east coast (very infrequently). I have two questions. Who or what is Frankie Howerd? What took you out of England to live in Japan? If the latter question is too personal forgive me please and simply ignore it.

    1. Frankie Howerf was a very camp comedy actor from the 1960's who often said 'oooooooh' as a kind of catchphrase and the Eider's mating calls remind me of it. I moved here in 1999 to work for a while and ended up getting married and staying........

  5. "Ooh missus, titter ye not" or words to that effect! Cultural points of reference eh?
    Anyway, looks like you had a great trip - loved the tern pics most of all - I've never been to the Farnes.
    Cheers me up a bit when you say its harder to photograph birds here! I'll keep plugging away until I can afford a Peli case!

    1. Hi Stuart, thanks!

      You should try the Farnes, it was quite an experience..............

  6. Given how much better most of your shots are than mine, I'm glad you think the birds and light are harder here - I'll use that as my excuse from now on!


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