Starling Trail

Today, I stood and waited in Loxtons Marsh for the return of the starlings. Unfortunately, the roost split and most of the birds flew overhead to the far end of the reserve.  However, all was not lost as a few birds dropped into Waltons Heath.

Starling Murmuration - Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_9845

Starling Murmuration – Loxtons Marsh, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_9845

I had chosen a new vantage point today, a large gap between the trees.  I waited there guarding my spot.  But sadly, the birds simply few passed.

Waltons Heath

The evening quickly recovered  when I could hear a small group starlings in the neighbouring Waltons Heath.  I short run and I got to see the last few groups drop into the reeds.  The backdrop was a glorious golden sky.

Starling Murmuration - Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_9898

Starling Murmuration – Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_9898

Most of the groups were tiny.

Starling Murmuration - Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_0002

Starling Murmuration – Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_0002

But, a few larger groups eventually appeared.

Starling Murmuration - Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_9990

Starling Murmuration – Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_9990

The Roost Relocates

To my surprise the birds decided to relocate to Loxtons.  For them, this is a quick flight over a line of trees and back down into the reeds.  By now the sky was turning a deep red.

Starling Murmuration - Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_0086

Starling Murmuration – Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_0086

More and more birds flew overhead into Loxtons.  A steady stream flying up into the sky over the trees.

Starling Murmuration - Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_0101

Starling Murmuration – Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset, UK. ID 823_0101

Seeing was was going on a group of visitors arrived hoping to get close to the action.  This may have caused the birds to cross into Loxtons further down the track.  They kept low and became impossible to photograph in the dark.

Hoping for more starlings - Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset.

Hoping for more starlings – Waltons Heath, Ham Wall, Somerset.

It is very common for the starlings to swap between reedbeds during the evening.  Even when it looks like the show is over for the day it is worth waiting a little bit longer – just in case.

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