Happy Fathers’ Day!

This male house sparrow looks rather weary and fed up of his youngster’s constant demands. I’m sure there are many human fathers out there that can sympathise at the moment! — All photographs copyright of Claire Stott/Grey Feather Photography © 2020 http://www.greyfeatherphotography.com If you like what you see, you can follow me on Facebook or Instagram (@greyfeatherphotography) to see…

Late arrivals

Summer is almost at an end and the breeding season is now over for much of our wildlife. The mallards here in Aberystwyth however appear to be having a late boom, with several new broods including this adorable bunch I encountered a few days ago. After the disappointment of the mute swans’ breeding failure this…

New beginnings

Having lived beside Aberystwyth harbour for over 4 years ago now, I have come to know its avian residents rather well, witnessing their trials of life, love and death on my own doorstep. In this time I have also seen the arrival of many new babies, from the adorable swan cygnets to the noisy, squabbling…

Patience pays off

After weeks of relentless rainfall the sun has finally returned to Aberystwyth, just in time for the beginning of summer! Taking up my usual uncomfortable (and slightly damp) seat on the slipway beside the harbour edge this morning I soaked up some much needed sunshine whilst waiting to see what birdlife might appear. An hour…

Bad feather day

After my failure to capture photographs of the young Jackdaw a few weeks ago, today my luck had turned and I was able to capture some more successful photographs as the corvid family foraged in and around the harbour slipway under the pleasant morning sunshine. The adults were busy searching for their breakfast among the…

Goslings

There was a pleasant surprise waiting down in the harbour this morning when a Canada Goose and her five adorable goslings were spotted gliding across the milky harbour water in the high tide gap. At first all seemed calm and tranquil however it was soon clear that the mother goose was in some distress, swimming…

Juvenile House Sparrow

A combination of the summer warmth and tidal nutrients has caused a greening of the harbour edges. the ground is carpeted in a layer of bright green algae making the rocks slippery and treacherous underfoot. This bloom of vegetation seems very attractive to the house sparrows, with a small flock hopping about foraging for food….

Young gulls

It is nearing the end of summer, and for most birds the breeding season is over for another year. For the Herring Gulls though, their work isn’t over just yet. The gulls begin nesting from late May onward and usually lay a clutch of around 3 eggs. Chicks remain in the nest for up to 40-50…

Ugly ducklings?

It has now been around 6 weeks since the mute swans cygnets left their nest and I am relieved to report, all five youngsters are still alive and thriving under the care of their devoted parents. The cygnets have grown rapidly in this short space of time. Gone are the cute, grey balls of fuzz,…

Jackdaw juvenile

Today was my first encounter with a charming juvenile Jackdaw who had appeared in the flock who regular patrol the harbour edges for food. It appeared to have fledged very recently and was smaller and more delicately built than the adults, the young also have bright blue eyes (which change to brown and then finally…

Five fluffy cygnets

I have now spent a few days watching the mute swan family from a frustrating distance, as they introduced their newly hatched cygnets to the territory but keeping their distance from my side of the river. Happily today they finally entered the harbour ‘gap’ and into range of my camera as the tide rose around…

Fight for survival

Sadly it seems that the failure of last year’s mallard ducklings to survive is set to repeat for a second year. Just a day after the ducklings left the safety of their nest before my very eyes (see here), only one duckling remains at it’s mothers side. The others were most likely predated by the…