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Grey Plover and Knot

Grey Plover and roosting Knot

Overall Winner, International Wildbird Photographer of the Year 2007.

I took this image in early October at Snettisham, Norfolk. Snettisham is an RSPB reserve and forms part of the Wash, a vast estuary on the East coast of the UK. During the winter months thousands of birds are attracted to this vast expanse of mud and huge numbers can be found. At high tide the birds that feed there need to find somewhere safe to roost and if it is a high spring tide the birds roost around the pits on the reserve. On the morning I took this shot some 40 thousand knots, Oystercatchers and other waders had come to roost. I was in the hide well before dawn and could hear the birds arriving in the dark and the noise was something else. Eventually the light came and I could start taking pictures of the mass of birds that were only feet away. I wanted to show the movement of the flock as they were constantly moving, shuffling for space in the centre. This lone Grey plover looking the opposite way was the perfect composition.

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