By mollyblobs


Late in the afternoon I parked just south of Maxey and walked along the south bank of the South Drain, hoping to get some photographs of the starling murmuration that's been seen lately. A promise of evening sunshine rapidly disappeared, and was replaced by a uniformly grey sky, with an increasingly gusty wind - not ideal conditions.

The first starlings appeared about twenty to four, and the murmuration gradually increased in numbers until the starlings finally roosted at five twenty. The wind meant that they didn't really make many tight formations, and most of the time they were a bit far away, though there were a few wonderful moments when they flew right overhead. By the time I took my final photographs it was too dark for the camera to focus. But I was delighted that I managed to see two completely separate murmurations at one time, with a smaller group dancing over the pylons of Bainton Pits to the west.

An added surprise bonus to my trip was watching a barn owl glide over the fields to the north of me, and then loop round and fly straight towards me along the drain bank. It spotted me just in time and veered to the side. I even saw it turn it's head as if to query what on earth I was doing there at dusk!

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