Yesterday I wrote about seeing two Ospreys soaring over the beach and headland at Marion Bay. This lovely species is one I’ve not seen many times before. This merely reflects the fact I’ve not done enough birding in their preferred habitats: shorelines, estuaries, rivers and lakes.
I short time after seeing the first two I saw another one, this time flying overland at the historic township of Inneston. To see one is good; to see three in a couple of hours was a real buzz, and a highlight of the weekend.
Inneston is now a deserted town. In the early twentieth century is was a bustling mining town with several hundred residents. The nearby lakes were mined for gypsum. When the mine closed the town quickly died. About five of the original homes have been restored and are now used as accommodation by visitors to the Innes National Park.
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 don’t often get the chance to observe the magnificent Osprey. When I do, it is always a special moment. I guess most birders feel the same way about this wonderful bird.
Therefore it was with great delight that I saw a special article in today’s state wide newspaper here in South Australia – The Advertiser – about this lovely bird, complete with a great photograph.
For those who do not have access to our daily paper, the photo and accompanying article can be seen by clicking here. It’s worth a quick visit – even if you only take a look at the great photo. [UPDATE: sorry – this link no longer works. Nov 2013]
Because the link to the photo I wrote about no longer works, I’ve included one I took some time ago while on a holiday on the Yorke Peninsula in South Australia. It’s not a great photo but it shows the Osprey in flight.