Starling Watch

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9114

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9114

I’m getting a bit behind with my starling news so here we go with a recap of the entire weekend.

Friday

After weeks of good weather, today was so dark and dull that I decided to go old school with some black and white pictures.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8254

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8254

The starling cloud floated around then got all twisted up as the birds descended into the reeds.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8307

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8307

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8319

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8319

Saturday

Today, I decided to watch the starlings lift out the reeds in the morning.

Starling Dawn - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. 826_8647

Starling Dawn – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. 826_8647

The birds moved in waves around the reed beds gathering from all directions into a black mass.

Starling Dawn - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. 826_8673

Starling Dawn – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. 826_8673

Suddenly, the birds exploded up into the air like a volcano of birds.

Starling Dawn - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. 826_8687

Starling Dawn – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. 826_8687

Sunday

The weather was a little bit brighter on Sunday.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8748

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8748

Watching from the viewing screen in the middle of the Loxtons Marsh I saw flock after flock drift into the distance.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8751

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8751

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8817

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8817

The birds were dropping down into the reeds in Waltons Heath behind the trees.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8873

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_8873

I had given up on the evening when huge flocks of starlings flowed all the way back from the Waltons to Loxtons.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9190

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9190

An amazingly dense cloud of birds.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9339

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9339

The birds did not settle in the reeds.  They kept moving eastwards in rolling waves towards the second viewing platform.

There is a big gap in the reeds and the birds needed to cross a footpath, a line of dead trees and open water to reach the next reed bed.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9556

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9556

Looking straight up into the sky the starlings were darting across the footpath.  As I walked up the path the birds also moved – sometimes in-front and sometimes behind.  They were very low and would not fly directly over my head!

I switched to a 16mm super wide angle lens to capture the birds just a few feet above me.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9694

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 826_9694

This week I am going to be really busy so its unlikely I can back down to Ham Wall until the weekend.

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