Wednesday, 17 November 2010
This week found me on the waxwing trail again. The good numbers of waxwings now in the country have been entertaining birdwatchers and photographers nationwide. Lancashire has been blessed with some decent flocks which first arrived in East Lancs but this week found a good number in my home town of Preston. I still can't think of Preston as a city but I was there in 2002 I think it was, when The Queen bestowed the new city title on Preston.
I digress so back to the waxwings. Yesterday was to be a beautiful day after early frost so I decided on an early lunch and then took myself and camera gear to search for the waxwings. I didn't have far to go and a twenty minute journey across the city found me on Euston Street where the waxwings had last been reported. It didn't take long before I heard that delightful little trill of a flock of waxwings perched high up on a dominant tree.
For the next couple of hours the gathererd birdwatchers and photographers were treated to some spectacular sightings of the flock of about seventy waxwings coming down to feed on a nearby rowan tree which was being rapidly stripped of it's supply of berries. It was delightful to watch them as they descended to feed in their typical smash and grab raids on the berries before retreating back to the tree tops to digest their intake of berries. It never ceases to amaze me the speed at which a waxwing can strip a tree of it's berries.
It was also nice to catch up with friends I hadn't seen for some time and we were all treated to a magnificent display from these fabulous visitors from Scandanavia. The weather helped greatly for photography as it was a magnificent sunny afternoon with no wind and blue skies. Perfect waxwing watching weather. I hope the images above convey to my readers some of the character and beauty of these very special visitors to our shores. Looks like this will be an excellent winter to see some waxwings and if you haven't yet done so I am sure they will turn up in most parts of the country in their quest for berries and more berries.l