Maybe a desert isn’t the obvious place to look for bird reflections, or indeed reflections of any kind. Deserts are dry, no? And the Atacama Desert in Chile is especially so. In fact, it’s the driest non-polar desert in the world, and has had no significant rainfall for 400 years.
And yet, the shallow waters of its barren salt flats offer picture-perfect reflections of feeding flamingos; an ideal place to start a short journey to find some reflections of birds for Lisa’s Bird Weekly challenge.
As well as the Andean Flamingos pictured above, we found others enjoying the rich feeding at the Salar de Atacama, including Andean Avocets …
… and a Baird’s Sandpiper.
I’ll share more about our visit to the Salar de Atacama in a future post. It’s a stunningly beautiful place! Meanwhile elsewhere in the Atacama, at the Putana Wetlands, we saw we saw Giant Coots, Andean Geese and Ruddy or Andean Ducks with their distinctive blue bills reflected in the muddy waters.
It’s harder to get a good reflection in the sea, but in a quiet rock pool on the beach at Ngala Lodge in the Gambia I was able to photograph this Whimbrel mirrored in the water that glows copper red from the reflections of the low cliffs that line the beach.
This White-crowned Plover wading in the waters of the Chobe River in Botswana has found a tasty insect.
Closer to home
My remaining photos were taken closer to home, starting with a swan on Langham Pond at Runnymede.
And here’s another swan leading a pair of youngsters on a tour of the lake at Syon Park.
Here are a couple of Tufted Ducks photographed at Boston Manor Park. I love the elegance of their black and white markings.
Also at Boston Manor is this Grey Heron, fishing from an overgrown islet in the middle of the lake.
I’ll finish on the River Thames, first with a pair of Egyptian Geese at Strand-on-the-Green. Yes, we are a long way from Egypt, but these birds, introduced into England in the 17th century, became popular exotica on private estates and subsequently escaped into the wild. Today the RSPB estimates there are around 1,100 breeding pairs in the UK.
And finally another Grey Heron in Richmond-on-Thames. Like many of us at the moment, he seems to be having a bad hair day!
I’m also sharing these images for Cee’s CFFC Birds theme.
And I’ll finish with a puzzle for you. All but one of the photos above is a genuine reflection. One however was manipulated with an app, Mirror Labs. Can you tell which?