Saturday, 28 February 2009

Great Cormorant

An icon of hatred to anglers in the UK, but what a stunning looking bird the Great Cormorant is; a reptilian look and a scaly pattern to their plumage makes them look like a very old bird family.
These stunners certainly showed grace and poise as they fished as close as 12 metres to me and they were well practiced and efficient at their art too.
I have never managed to see these at really close range before, so as much as I enjoyed photographing them, I really got a big thrill at being able to watch their behavior and note the fine plumage too.

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

On my belly in the mud again

February is always a good month on the bird photography calendar, because it is the best month for Barn Owls, this year has been spectacular in that there appears to be very good numbers of these marvelous birds.
This year, as well as the usual portraits and flight shots, I have tried to document other aspects of their lives, especially the threats to them from traffic as they do seem to like hunting roadside verges.
I have also had another couple of visits to the Norfolk coast to shoot waders, the Turnstone's and Dunlin especially as they are so photogenic from a low point of view (I usually get very wet and muddy at this site) I was very happy to get one of the Dunlin wing stretching in amongst some wet stones.
The Snow Bunting flock at Salthouse have been photographed by everyone as they are readily coming to the seeded area there, but I wanted to get some shots on the wet shingle by the pools, so I spent some time working on them; still not got one bathing though, and thats the shot I want!

Saturday, 14 February 2009

More Barn Owls

I think I had my "Harry Potter" charm with me again yesterday, one of my best ever Barn Owl encounters, 3 different female birds hunting in the same area, many times they were as close as just 10 metres from me, fantastic light and they were perching in trees instead of on posts as well; now where did I park my "Nimbus 2000"..........

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Thrushes at the feeders

Six hours in the cold staring through the viewfinder and I was frozen, but these little bundles of feathers are out in it day and night, you just have to admire their ability to survive in this winter spell we are going through.
They certainly are getting through some food! usually the Fieldfare and Mistle Thrushes are wary, but they are not far away as the feeders are topped up, and straight back as soon as you are hidden away.

Friday, 6 February 2009


Something I have wanted to get images of properly is our winter Thrushes in a wintery setting, the problem being when the winter weather arrived getting to the feeder site was a bit of a marathon journey, very worthwhile though!
This Fieldfare posed well and defended his apples all day, Redwing is the target for tomorrow!

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Stone turners a different view

An ongoing project that has taken some time to get all the kit together to make remote shooting a joy rather than a labour of love; that said, it has taken a long time to get this so it produces the goods with some degree of predictability!
In return for a fishy feast these Turnstones put a very big smile on my face 3 times over, fun shooting them, more fun seeing the results on the camera, and a very smug grin when I downloaded them to view on my big monitor; I will take them another fish supper as a thankyou!

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Hoverers galore

A fantastic week with some nice light and a couple of good performers in the way of Barn Owls and Kestrel.
The Kestrel seemed unaware or unconcerned by me being there and I managed to get a couple of "rodents eye views" of the bird from in the grass, a shot that I have always had in my minds eye. The close shots of it from a 3/4 rear view have also been a shot I had in mind.
The Barn Owl performed beautifully too, many more daylight images similar to those on the previous post here, but the nighttime shot of it hovering has been a shot that I have tried to get for possibly as long 20 years, I almost didn't dare look at the screen afterwards, just two frames and my heart sank when the first one showed on the monitor, the owl's wing was covering its face, the second had me whooping with excitement.