Friday, 5 October 2012

Hobbies and Peregrine, RW, 1st Oct

At least five Hobbies (three juveniles) have been taking advantage of the glut of Common Darters and Migrant Hawkers in recent days. Some of the encounters have been unbelievable with  Hobbies snatching dragonflies 2-3m away from my face. Most of the time the action was far too quick for the camera so just a selection of the typical static flight shots here. I often wonder just how amazing it would be to ride on the back of a migrating Hobby all the way to it's African wintering grounds  - I guess an endless supply of sick bags would be required. 

Juvenile homing in on a pair of Common Darters in tandem. Sometimes the Hobbies would have a Darter in each foot, munching one at a time on the wing. The larger Migrant Hawkers were often taken to a nearby tree to be consumed. 

The twists and turns that hobbies perform especially when they initially miss their target and have to readjust are often beyond belief.

Primary nine appears to be still growing? It was the same in both wings. 

You sometimes don't realise just how small Hobbies are until you see them mob or get mobbed. This Carrion Crow chased a juvenile (male?) briefly before the Hobby left it dead in the sky. 

Munching Common Darters like carrots. 

Almost. One juvenile would often fly straight at me about 4ft off the ground and at 50mph?, passing 3-4m away before repeating it again. Needless to say I couldn't keep the camera on it. Outstanding birds. 

Whilst watching the Hobbies, a male Peregrine flew past and landed for a bath. Going on it's bulging crop, it had recently fed. It spent 45 minutes on the ground before heading off east. 

The Lapwings constantly harassed the Perg in flight although always keeping behind him.