Goslings and Ducklings

Yesterday I went to Hartsholme Park with the family; my 6 year old nephew (and the rest of the family) needed to get out of the house.

We actually remembered to take some old bread for the ducks this time. My nephew isn’t really into wildlife as his main interest are the swings and various climbing frames.

As we walked around the park, we did notice in addition to the young Herons in the park, there were also some Greylag goslings that I could only just see with the 70-300mm @300mm. I took a few shots but even when magnified you could only just see that they were there.

As we walked around the park, we could see two distinct families, one with 5 goslings:

And the second only had one gosling:

These are aren’t great shots but do help illustrate the story.

However as we walked further around the park the geese and goslings got nearer to the shore and I was able to get some shots:

Even my nephew was suitably impressed with the goslings, I suppose most young animals elicit that kind of response.

As we continued around the park I saw a mother Mallard and her duck but they were within bushes along the edge of the lake so I couldn’t get a picture, however we did see another Mallard mother and her duckling further along, I got a couple of good shots:


It would have been nice if the mother had turned to face me as it would have made the shot much better.

I was also lucky to see a Crested Grebe quite close to shore, I find these very hard to photograph as they are quick swimmers and dive when you least expect it, this is one of the best shots of these birds that I have managed to capture, it did need to be cropped a bit:

During the walk round as we fed some of the birds, I noticed this Mallard duck, it seemed very lighter than normal. It is likely to be a female due to the absence of the brighter colours over most of its body but the brown was very light. Could this be a hybrid bird? I have been informed that this does happen sometimes:

The park is very green at the moment and there are many flowers around including lots of Bluebells, you have to very careful with these flowers as they are very delicate. We also saw some wild white Rhododendron, these are very pretty delicate flowers:

See if you can see the small arachnid on the flower, I didn’t notice this until after I got home.

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