Thursday, 29 October 2009

Starling Roost... Marton Mere...Blackpool










One of nature's spectacular events is currently taking place at Marton Mere Nature Reserve at Blackpool. An estimated 60,000 + starlings are arriving each evening to roost in the reserve's reed beds. I was fortunate to witness this spectacular event yesterday on a beautiful very mild and sunny evening.
Along with another dozen or so birdwatchers I thrilled to see the  flocks of starlings coming in from the Fylde in large groups of birds which then assembled in trees adjoining the Premium Bonds Office at Marton. Eventually as more and more birds arrived the now vast flock of starlings joined up and started to fly over the area of the Mere. It was a tremendous site as at times they filled the sky which was now turning orange as the sun was beginning to set. Also present was a peregrine falcon and a couple of sparrowhawks looking for an easy meal. The arrival of the raptors sent the starlings into some wonderful patterns in the sky as they tried to evade the attacks. All too soon the birds began to plunge down into the reedbeds where they would eventually settle down to spend the night safe from any further attacks.
It had been a wonderful experience to witness one of Nature's great spectacles and it is one that will be repeated for many more evenings during the next month or so. Hopefully my images above will convey some of the beauty of the event. However if any of my readers have the opportunity to visit the area within the next few weeks I can assure them that they will not be disappointed at the wonderful spectacle of the evening's starling roost.

12 comments:

  1. Brian, fantastic images from Marton, well done mate, and I might add a huge thanks for letting me know that the starlings had arrived. I went there last night and watched the "spectacular" in the gloom, but it was still an earth moving moment.

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  2. Cracking pics Brian. Its not easy to capture the scale of these events, but you have managed to do that.

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  3. Good shots Brian better than mine I took a week earlier. Be good to know if your heading down there again soon as will meet up with you. Seeing as I only live over the road from Marton Mere.

    Neil

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  4. Superb pictures Brian. I've never seen that many Starlings going to roost. Like you said, one of nature's spectacular events. An incredible experience to witness.

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  5. PS Brian, convinced your going to get POTW on Birdguides. Fingers crossed you deserve it.

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  6. Must add my admiration to the comments re this truly amazing spectacle of the pre roosting Starlings at Marton Mere. You also had the advantage of the setting sun to add atmosphere to your images Brian. The obvious is to refer to the photography as excellent in the first degree......well done Brian.

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  7. Thanks everyone. It was a wonderful experience and one that has to be seen to be believed.

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  8. Oh wow. You got some fabulous photos here. I wish I could have been alive in those days when this part of our country would go dark when passenger pigeons would fly overhead and when they roosted at night their weight in numbers would break limbs out of oak trees and their poop so deep that farmers collected it and used it on their fields.

    This is a fabulous group of photographs.

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  9. Brian, just had to come back and say congratulations on winning Photo of the Week, on Bird Guides.
    A well deserved win.

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  10. Hello Brian,greats series pictures,ist a wonderful moment!!!
    Congratulations!!!

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