Monday, September 24, 2012

Always a first time at Miranda

There is a first time for everything and there is nothing quite like that moment when you see a bird you have been wanting to see forever and suddenly it is there in front of you. On Saturday there were several of these events for different members of our  Forest and Bird group.
 We were visiting the Miranda Shorebird Centre. Our day, led by Alan Emmerson started well when Alan nearly tripped over his tripod when he spotted a bittern standing motionless in the reeds by a pond as we headed towards the old and new hides in time for high tide. The bittern  was a long way off but easy to see through one of our high powered scopes. This is a rare shy bird and my first sighting. I hope you can just make it out in this photo?

The second rarity of the day was the black fronted tern more usually seen in the South Island. This delighted us as it flew in front of the new hide. I thought I was photographing a Caspian tern until Alan corrected me. Later I was able to compare a Caspian tern in flight as one later hovered/hunted over the Stilt ponds.

We saw a total of 43 birds during the day including such delights as the beautiful Pacific Golden Plovers and Ruddy Turnstone.
All in all a great day at Miranda. Thank you Alan for sharing your knowledge and making it a fun day too.

More photos at this link