Bittern flying over RSPB Radipole. 28/01/11.
Hi Dom. Nice shot. Looks weird having such a scarce, secretive bird set in an urban landscape. I had one fly out of Cheffey's over Weymouth Way and drop into Radipole yesterday evening and it didn't seem remotely bothered by the rush hour traffic. Let's hope they're still about in 3 or 4 months time!
Hi Nick. It is a weird juxtaposition isn't it. Many such contradictions at both your Weymouth sites! I had 4 sightings of bitterns in flight within 40 mins stood at the Buddleia Viewpoint. Possibly 3 birds in total - might that be right?
Can you ID individual birds from photos by the way?
We did have 6 or 7 bittern around towards the end of last year - it is very difficult to get accurate counts - one of which was notably paler across the wings. Now it seems that we have slightly fewer, perhaps 3 or 4.
Luke, (who knows about such things) says that with good photos individuals can be separated by plumage variations on the chest and neck but it isn't easy.
In late February we will commence 'booming' duty from a number of stations around the reserves so drop us a line if you fancy the odd stint!