A Pallid Harrier

If I had a spirit animal it would be a Hen Harrier. I love to see them. They appear, they go; they are mercurial. Here’s a Hen Harrier in my back garden:

Then, there’s the closely-related Montagu’s Harrier, which has similar harrying habits. Here’s my joyful experience of a Montagu’s Harrier in Italy:

We’re in Italy, standing by the side of a lake when I decide to potter off behind a tree in search of a closer view of a duck. There’s nothing here to photograph apart from a distant Flamingo flypast. Then I hear a call and the sound of the Puffin Whisperer’s camera shutter making many exposures a second. I can hear her struggling to think of the English name of what she’s photographing. Then it appears in front of me: it’s a Pallid Harrier.

Pallid Harrier - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

What an outstanding experience.

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