Ospreys soaring on the wind
On our recent short holiday on the Yorke Peninsula here in South Australia we stopped to have lunch at Penguin Point near Marion Bay. I didn’t see any penguins; at this time of year they are probably all far out to sea feeding. In fact, I saw very few birds during our lunch break. The reason for this was the weather; it was blowing a gale.
While sitting in the car eating our lunch two Ospreys flew low overhead. This was a great sighting because I’ve rarely seen this species over the years. Seeing two at once was a bonus. They were using the strong wind to soar and hover over the nearby beach and rocky headland. They repeatedly did this so it was too good an opportunity to let slip.
Leaving my lunch I braved the fierce wind and cold conditions and ventured out with my camera. Now I must admit that I have not really mastered the art of photographing birds in flight. It’s a skill I must spend far more time on developing. This was a good opportunity to practise. One element quickly become an obvious hindrance: the wild, blustery conditions. It was hard enough trying to remain upright without worrying about getting the shot just right. So I basically just aimed and clicked, hoping for the best.
While the photos on this post will never win any great photo competition, at least you can identify the birds from them. I console myself with two thoughts:
- I now have some photos of this species.
- I can only get better.
I’m not really into birding as you know, Trevor, but the photos look pretty fine to me. On the subject of birds I had four birds in the driveway this morning: their feathers were white with brown shading, they had a bluish-black ring around the back of their necks and thet looked like pigeons. any idea?
The birds sound like Barbary Doves (sometimes called Collared Turtledoves). They are a common aviary bird and they sometimes escape – or are deliberately released. They are becoming established as a feral population in some Adelaide and Melbourne suburbs.
We had one in our garden a few years ago. You can see some photos here:
thanks Trevor. just checked out the photo. yep. that was them. my neighbor who was also looking on suspected they were pets who had escaped or been let go
Not sure where John lives, but many states’ environment or primary industries departments would be keen to hear about populations of Barbary Doves, for control purposes.
John lives in Adelaide. Although attempts have been made to control this species, the efforts, I believe, are rather half hearted and of a low priority, I believe. Sadly I can see the day when they might outnumber the Spotted Turtledoves.