Friday, 30 November 2007

Bunting bonanza

A fine day in Norfolk at Salthouse, not really the weather for laying on the beach perhaps, but I spent about 4 hours on my tum in the shingle blasting off 18 gig on these lovely Lapland Buntings (Longspurs) and Snow Buntings, a fantastic day that started off at Lakenheath and ended up hunched over the fire with hot tomato soup plus fish and chips..... and then hunched over the PC editing the mountain of pictures!

Desert Wheatear

I've now seen four Desert Wheatears in the UK, all have been very confiding, but this one at Horsey is a real poser, often coming much too close to focus and at one point perching on the camera! A fine bird and a joy to photograph.

Winter well on the way

Winter is well on its way, Whooper Swans are back at Welney, huge flocks if winter thrushes, the Fieldfare being just one of a large group, have arrived, and Magpies are scoffing all the food at the feeding station, the light is non existent mostly, its been cold and wet; but I still love this time of year because when you get everything come together nicely you get some great pictures.

Sunday, 18 November 2007

The pits

This has been a lot of hard work and standing around in the cold, another wildlife photographer, Andy Darrington, and I have dug a huge pit hide beside a pond at the bottom of his field, (not such hard work as Andy owns a JCB style digger) fuelled by copious amounts of tea and digestives we added a plywood roof thatched with fir tree branches and then "dressed the set" with a variety of props, an old gate, mossy logs, 3 sacks of autumn leaves and interesting perches etc. Its still a bit early and may take a while to get settled-in; but already its paid off handsomely with visiting Sparrowhawk, Green Woodpecker, Grey Wagtail, Bullfinches, two Kingfishers (not while I've been there, yet!) and a variety of other birds. Being a pit hide the low point-of-view works well, the only problem is that some of the visitors come too close, today the female Sparrowhawk dropped-in about 3 feet away, right under my camera position, I must pack the shorter lenses next visit!

Cliff and the shadows

You can't beat a corny pun as a title, nothing to do with Mr Richards or Hank and co, but a great place for a summer holiday! even better as a winter afternoon and evening photo location, this is Hunstanton beach and cliffs.
They seem to have had a bit of a bashing in the recent bad weather and sea conditions, but are still just as photogenic as ever; this last Wednesday I spent several hours, until it was nigh on dark, running around with the Canon and tripod, dog walkers and joggers were a bit of a problem but its now so easy to shoot two or more images and sample the appropriate bits to paint these people out in photoshop afterwards!