Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Lesvos 2014 May 6th

With just one full day left I was up and out at the Little Owl site first thing again. The farm yard is right next to the road, in fact it's at a lower level which is handy as you are at a good angle for your photographs. I'd taken lots over the last few days but I wanted to get some finer detail. The entrance to the farm was a high padlocked gate and fence and from the road side there's a drop of around five feet . On the other side of the road was another small holding where there was a house as well. I wondered if the farmer owned both properties. I decided to ask as he was working outside. He didn't speak a word of English but I managed to get across that I was asking for permission to photograph which he was happy to give. Whether he realised that I was asking to drop over the wall and go through a gap in the fence I don't suppose he realised but there was no way I could explain that bit.Anyway, leaving my camera on the roadside I dropped over the edge of the smooth concrete wall not sure if I'd get out again due to the height ! Through the gap in the hedge and towards the Owl. He was in his hole in the wall today and I was able to reduce the usual distance from where I was photographing by 50%.
Little Owl 2014-05-06
Satisfied I retreated and managed to haul myself up and out again. The things you do for a shot !
The light was not good today and it looked like being a dull one. I suggested to Claire we should take a walk to Molyvos taking a longer but more interesting route through local farmland.
We set off passing the Little Owl farm
Little Owl Farm
through the Olive groves and on towards the castle. Interesting walk, I should have checked it out before as there were a few birds about including one or two Shrikes , still very much a target species. I deliberately hadn't taken anything bigger than my 24-105mm lens so photo's were out of the question. Today I was giving some time to Claire and not too soon either. My unease that the weeks holiday had failed to deliver for her continued. The best I could offer was good food and the odd drink if the weather wasn't playing it's part.
I have to say, I'm very lucky to have an extremely supportive and understanding wife. She didn't complain once, she knows I owe her one !
Once again as the day progressed the weather seemed to improve.Looking down from Molyvos Castle towards our favourite restaurant on the beach you can just make out the apartments in the distance. We headed back for Claire to sit out and for me to grab a bigger lens and head to the Olive groves again.
Molyvos beach
This time I drove and finding my luck was out there, headed back to the reservoir area.
As seems to happen to me so often, the last 24 hours of a trip bring some of the best sightings and photo opportunities of the holiday.Today was no exception, first an Orphean Warbler, another lifer which  was right out on the road and in the process of dispatching a Bush Cricket.
Sombre Tit 2014-05-06
Then further up the road I spot a Woodchat Strike, another species I had been after all week.
Bushchat Shrike 12014-05-06 (1)
To my delight there were two of them and they were quite close to the road.I was even able to get out of the car and move right up to the wall and in open view.One of them had caught a caterpillar and was in the process of impaling it on a thorn... it's what Shrikes do, but something I have never seen. I took what technically might not be the best shot but certainly my favourite of the week.
Bushchat Shrike 32014-05-06
Elated I returned home for dinner !

No comments:

Post a Comment