Zoo Trip #58: Hawk Conservation Trust (Sun Sept 4)
I ventured into Hampshire on Sunday because it was the first ever Member's Day at the Hawk Conservation Trust near Weyhill. It was also the last day they were performing the special pageant that runs through the Summer holiday. In addition to the normal flying displays there were a number of talks and special events for members.
I wouldn't normally visit on a weekend or bank holiday because of the crowds, but I am glad I made the exception although it was somewhat overwhelming at times and there were lots of families in attendance.
Although I took almost 300 pictures almost half of them were deleted as soon as I looked at them as I had left the ISO setting far too low for the available light with the lens I had just attached to my K-1, with its maximum aperture of f5.8. I had forgotten to adjust the default settings, so the combination of fast moving birds and virtually no depth of field with an ISO of 200 or less caused a high failure rate. However, this did not detract from the experience of being there and seeing the birds and falconers perform.
I wanted my blip to represent the pageant, which was called The Sarson Falconer (the HCT is in Sarson Lane). Many of the members had volunteered to appear in it, and there were donkeys and a gaggle of geese amongst the group as it was performed for the final time. The Sarson Falconer was played by Gary, seen in the blip with his peregrine falcon, Farrah.
One of the African white-backed vultures, Butch Cassidy, had been banned the previous year for flying into the audience and eating their food. He apparently had a preference for bubblegum flavoured ice cream, and we were warned not to have food lying around, as he was such a character he had been allowed back into the flying group. I had just consumed my picnic lunch there, including a vegetarian pie whose crust had become quite crumbly en route, so there was a fair portion of it on the ground at my feet. Sure enough it took him no time at all to discover the tidbits and peck up the whole lot!
In the final event we were introduced to some new birds including the public debut of a very young Egyptian vulture called Boe.
6.9.2016 (1928 hr)
Blip #1921 (#2171 including archived blips)
Consecutive Blip #002
LOTD #1156 (#1280 including archived blips)
Taken with Pentax K-1 and Pentax HD P-DA 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED WR lens
Hawk Conservancy Trust, 4 September 2016 (Flickr album)
Birds Of Prey series
Hawk Conservancy Trust series
Outdoor Places I Have Sat In series
Lozarithm of the Day:
Bert Jansch - Fresh As A Sweet Sunday Morning (recorded April–June 1974, Luxford House, Sussex and Sound City, Sepulveda CA)
From the album L.A. Turnaround)
One Year Ago: