Tag Archives: Bird Behaviour

Lesser Spotted Woodpecker at Ynys-hir

The Lesser Spotted Woodpecker is not an easy bird to see or photograph. I’ve been to quite a few locations over the years where they are known to breed (and it’s never easy to be 100% sure of that!) but never even caught sight of them. ‘A shy bird of the high canopy’ is often how bird books will describe them.

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Sheigra – To the end of what was possible

This was a place we found by simply driving to the end of what was possible. We’d been down all the small roads off the road north from Kinlochbervie; Oldshoremore, Droman, the wonderful Bagh a’ Phollain.

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Ring Ouzel and Wheatear

You sometimes get days when everything seems to be just right, I remember one at Firemore Sands some years ago when the dramatic weather played back drop to ten Black-throated Divers, Gannets diving in the bay, terns all around and surfing Red-breasted Mergansers. I had another one recently on our journeys around Scotland.

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Yellow Wagtail – Quotes

There are certain birds that simply push all the buttons; for many they may be birds of prey, Divers, (see post here) Puffins, Gannets, and perhaps the diminutive Goldcrest and Firecrest.

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Golden Eagles on Mull


My brother Phil had just come back from Mull and had told of a golden eagle eyrie very close to the single road that runs through Glen More. He’d also been lucky enough to see it take a live lamb off the hillside in front of the eyrie and return it to the then small eaglet sitting tight and out of sight in what had become known as the ‘smiling rock’, due to the shape of the crag under which the eyrie lay.

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A few images from Scotland


Just a quick post firstly to apologise for the lack of activity on the site and secondly to preview a few images from a recent trip to Scotland.

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Avocets, Godwits and Gulls at Marshside


Simply a great place to be during this time of the year. Avocets, godwits, gulls and lots of squabbling – wish I lived closer!

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Mediterranean Gulls at Marshside


The changing landscape of bird populations within Britain makes for interesting reading and Marshside, close to Southport, has seen some very interesting trends over the twenty or so years its been in the care of the RSPB.

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Decline of the Sparrows


Just back from the North West after doing a small piece for BBC Countryfile (more on that later) and managed a few day out with the camera and collecting more material for the WALK project in the summer. This first post concentrates on a few hours I spent with the tree sparrows at Martin Mere and the decline of the sparrows of this country.

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Red Kites at Llanddeusant



I’ve been to Gigrin and Bwlch Nant yr Arian to photograph the red kites, but never to Llanddeusant. It’s a lot quieter than the other two, the sun’s behind you and the hides are very good for viewing but more importantly they’re excellent for photography.

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Birds in Flight


Back at the farm again and working in a little brighter light gave me better parameters in which to work. The flight shots were taken with the Nikon 500mm lens prefocused on about a two foot square frame.

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Home Farm Favourites



Back on the farm, I’ve been working with some of the old favourites.

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Ruff at Martin Mere


Another recent wader encountered whilst out with the geese was the ruff. Five birds spent a good half hour picking up the swan feed towards dusk and it was interesting to note the very different stages of plumage from wintering adults to juvenile birds. It’s the leg colour that varies more than anything and is pretty well emphasised in these images.

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Some Winter Waders



Squabbling black-tailed godwits

It’s been the geese that have drawn me to various locations recently but there’s normally a trade off in the form of waders that frequent the same habitat. Here’s a few images of some of the waders I’ve encountered recently whilst following the geese.

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Avocets on the Exe


Second day in the hide – 500 avocets, black and bar-tailed godwits and dunlin – the hide tide had pushed them all onto the Bowling Green Marsh on the Exe estuary. I was in the hide early enough to watch the avocets arrive, they came in three pulses.

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The Exe Estuary and Mulled Wine!


Early morning at Topsham harbour on the way to the hide

More to come from Islay later but I managed a few of days down on the Exe estuary last week, again in search of getting some images of geese, dark-bellied brent this time from arctic Russia, in the context of the estuary. It was also an opportunity to witness a spectacle that has to be one of the finest in Britain, the population of avocets that flock in large numbers to this part of the world during the winter.

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Two Rare Geese



I’ve never seen lesser white-fronted geese in the wild or red-breasted geese but you have a chance to get close in and personal with them, and other more common British species, at the WWT centres.

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Tern on the Wear


Whilst I was waiting for my brother to pick up his passport from the Durham regional office back in the summer (I’ve a bit of catching up to do!) and listening to the Ashes on TMS, I noticed a common tern fishing by a weir on the Wear. We were due to visit the Cathedral later on and as per normal I carry the 50 -500mm with me at all times.

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Pelagic Sea Trip With AK Wildlife Cruises


On a recent trip down to Falmouth to attend my youngest daughter’s graduation (Press and Editorial Photography)  I was able to grab some time to get out with AK Wildlife Cruises on one of their day long pelagic sea trips.

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Working with the commoner gulls


A series of images taken on the river Taff. It doesn’t matter what your working with there’s always a real feeling of excitement when your around any activity and the aim is to find the one shot when it all comes together.

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