Sunday, November 19, 2006

'Black-eared' Black Kite

My threshhold resistance to birds of prey (especially rare ones!) is pretty low and , after breifly turning down the chance to go and see one, I rapidly backpeddled and found myself on the fens of East Lincolnshire this morning looking for one! A Black kite (a rare and difficult to 'catch up with' species at the best of times) had taken temporary residence here over the past couple of weeks. However earlier this week the bird had been re-identified as a sub species of the east asian race generally known as Black-eared Kite, of which there is no positive previous sighting in Britain (though at least one is pending). Anyhow, after a chilly 2 mile walk across level flat fields via high access banks (and they say Norfolk is Flat!) the Black-eared Kite was seen excellently initially on the ground and then giving prolonged flight veiws. The major down side was as soon as I turned my camera on after charging it up all yesterday, the battery went flat! Not a happy bunny!! I had to make do with grainy video!

Apparent Black-eared Kite the spotted upperparts are typical of juvenile Black Kites

Apparent Black-eared Kite- showing the crucial solid white primary bases to at least the first four primaries (9-5) and a strong demarcation with the black primary tips. (similar to photos of nominate race in Forsman?)

Apparent Black-eared Kite in flight, you could be forgiven for initially thinking that this was a Red Kite at a quick glance, look at that white panel!

Also noted here were 9 Whooper Swan overhead and single Hen Harrier and Peregrine.

Back home in Aylmerton and the last of the spuds were being lifted, which brought in more gulls, which happened to bring in a Mediterranean Gull ... when I was watching the Kite! Typical! Anyway no sign of it this afternoon but managed to time my walk to coincide with a couple of flocks of Pink- feet overhead.


Mostlymacro said...

Hi Andy, re; grainy video. I also had my VC out today, filming a drake Mandarin. If only the image was half as good on the PC as it is on the TV, it would`nt be too bad.


Andy said...

I know, video is really versatile but unless you've got at least 1 million pixel model the grabs can be really disappointing

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