Tuesday, 21 June 2011


Malcolm and I have been keeping an eye on a Coots nest built by the side of one of the smaller lakes which make up the Straw's Bridge area.  Each time we have visited over the past couple of weeks, the female bird has been sitting tight while the male has been picking around in the weed and the Water Horsetails which grow in the lake.  This morning's walk revealed that the family has successfully hatched just one egg and the resulting chick was following it's parents about on the water, demanding food.
The difference between the male and female parents is sometime tricky to see, but in the picture above, it is a bit more obvious as the Male (on the right) has a slightly larger white shield on it's head than the female.
The light on the water reflecting straight at me as I took the pictures, has resulted in some nice effects as the Coot chick bobbed about with it's rather weird, almost bald headed look.  Sweet little thing!
Coots can sometime be rather rough - not to say violent - with their offspring and are known to kill their own young in what seems to us to be a fit of' pique', but for now, this little one was being well looked after and it's parents were never far away, keeping a beady, red eye on their precious bundle.
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