Blog

  1. A new bathing pool and garden robins

    29 Apr 2017
    Through the winter I’ve been making much more of an effort to feed our resident garden birds.  I’ve also been giving them a wider variety of food than just say peanuts or the like.  This has had a significant effect on both the numbers and variety of birds visiting the…

  2. A tale of speed and being so near and yet…

    20 Apr 2017
    … still too far away; in a couple of ways that I will relate here Yesterday morning I took the dog for a walk.  It was a clear blue morning with a few light cumulus clouds and a slight, if surprisingly cool, gentle breeze.  As I often do, I took…

  3. Our common moorhen…

    18 Apr 2017
    It’s called the ‘common’ moorhen and it is.  You will often see it on lakes, ponds or slow rivers or canals and we rarely give it a second glance.  Possibly we overlook them because they are quite secretive and skulk at the edge of dense vegetation and will slip away…

  4. Experimenting with image (focus) stacking…

    11 Apr 2017
    (I’ve updated this post to include later results of using Helicon Focus as a comparison to Photoshop.) This is just a sharing of a first attempt at image stacking when taking macro photos to share with a friend and anyone else who finds it useful.   I took a series of…

  5. A fine spring day. What to do?

    02 Apr 2017
    Well obviously, on one of the first warm spring days of April, you spend the afternoon closeted in your bathroom Ok, so that is closeted in the bathroom with the camera mounted on the windowsill peering out into the garden watching the nesting blue tits come and go to the…

  6. Otters - first impressions

    27 Mar 2017
    I’ve just completed the first pass processing of the images from my otter watching trip to the Shetlands last week and have created an new gallery here.  I faced a minor dilemma on which menu area of the site to put them.  Originally, I was sure that otters should go…

  7. Shetland - Northern Lights

    23 Mar 2017
    One major surprise on my trip to the Shetlands this week was a great sighting go the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis).  I’ve never seen them before and I didn’t think a short visit in March would give the opportunity but luck was definitely on my side this time.  It was…

  8. Keep a Lookout For…

    23 Mar 2017
    I’ve just got home from a trip up to the Shetland Isles where I’d been hoping to photograph and learn a lot more about Otters.  I’d heard that Shetland is a stronghold of otters in the UK but they are elusive and shy creatures so I joined Richard Shucksmith who…

  9. Bird Ringing

    11 Mar 2017
    I’ve never seen birds being ringed before but morning I had the opportunity of going along to a bird ringing demonstration at a local nature reserve (Hazely Heath near Hartney Whitley).  The ringing was being done by trained volunteer bird ringers from the BTO (British Trust for Ornithology).  The BTO…

  10. Not so safe sex…

    10 Mar 2017
    Spring must definitely be in the air.  A couple of posts back I shared some photos of mating, Canada Goose style.  Today is more a lesson drawn from the ‘Handbook of Natural Selection’ about not getting too engrossed.   If you see toads or frogs this time of year there is…

  11. Little Egret

    10 Mar 2017
    Little Egrets are a relatively recent coloniser in the UK.  I never saw one as a child and I can’t quite remember the first I saw in the UK but they have become steadily more common in the south of England to the point where they are a moderately common…

  12. Not Drowning but Mating*

    01 Mar 2017
    Earlier this week I was out at our wildlife reserve pond when I caught a sequence of shots of this pair of Canada Geese in a courtship display followed by them mating just a little way off shore.  You might mistake this display and mating for a fight between two…

  13. Doh - Check those settings…

    28 Feb 2017
    Today, as usual, I took the dog out for a walk and, again as usual*, picked up the camera just in case ‘anything cropped up’.  Unfortunately, I didn’t thoroughly check all the settings.  For sure, I checked the exposure settings (aperture mode,  and ISO to keep the shutter speed up…

  14. Growing activity and a photographer’s frustrations

    06 Feb 2017
    It’s early February and it’s noticeable that wildlife activity is picking up in the local woods and meadows.  The herons are beginning to reoccupy the best nest sites in the heronry, there is more birdsong, I’ve got blue tits occupying a nest box outside my bedroom window and I’m seeing…

  15. Feeding garden birds in the winter…

    10 Jan 2017
    Each year I put up feeders in the garden and endeavour to keep them topped up, especially through the cold spells and when I’m going to be away.  The garden has a strong ‘community’ of grey squirrels so I have to make sure I only use (expensive and sophisticated) “squirrel-proof”…

  16. Flying a Kite (& Happy Christmas)

    24 Dec 2016
    We are just past the shortest day and the sun stays frustratingly low (just 15 degrees at it’s highest right now) and correspondingly weak.  That makes for short daylight hours long shadows and mostly low shutter speeds!  When the sun comes out, you really do want to take advantage.   Many…

  17. Fallow morning

    15 Nov 2016
    On Monday I had to pay a visit to Leicester.  That’s a two and a half hour drive each way assuming the M3, M25 and M1 are actually moving.  However, it gave me the chance to drop by one of my favourite spots of Bradgate park just north of the…

  18. Wildcat?

    11 Nov 2016
    Well, let’s be honest, no.  These couple of pictures are not of a Wildcat but a common domestic cat.  This afternoon, I was out seeing if anything cropped up when I spotted this tabby moving quietly and stealthily on the opposite bank of the canal.  It was tracking several ducks…

  19. Brownsea Island

    27 Oct 2016
    I took the opportunity today of doing something I haven’t done before.  I went down to Brownsea Islan to watch and photograph Red Squirrels.  Autumn is firmly here and with it misty mornings, trees turning to russet and nuts galore.  Perfect for squirrels.   The challenge is, in the UK, our…

  20. Vultures - Critically Endangered…

    18 Oct 2016
    Last week I was finishing off the Botswana journey pages when I decided, really as a bit of an afterthought, to give Vultures their own gallery rather than just bundle them in with a number of other savannah birds.  My reason at the time was that they both made a…

  21. Botswana - now complete…

    13 Oct 2016
    It turned out to be a much greater undertaking than I’d intended but the section on the Botswana Journey is now (probably) complete.  It amounts to 29 galleries, some 90 species of animals and about 325 photos!   Quite a few further galleries have been added below the last blogged section…

  22. The big one…

    06 Oct 2016
    Well, I could avoid it no longer.  I just had to get the last of the ‘big 5’ onto the Botswana 2016 journey.  With over 1600 photos of Elephants, it was quite a task to select a representative sample.  I hope you enjoy these ones.  You can jump straight to…

  23. Lots more…

    29 Sep 2016
    It’s been a bit busy here both working but also trying to finish off the Botswana Trip.  So busy that I’ve not really been able to pick up a camera since my return.  So, since the last post you will find more galleries covering: Rollers, Warthogs, Buffalo, Storks, African Fish…

  24. Genets and Lions

    25 Sep 2016
    Momentum building again with a nocturnal Genet and near nocturnal Lions (two sets) making it onto the site today.  You can find then from the Botswana page here.  

  25. Photography Gear for an African Safari.

    19 Sep 2016
    Now, I’m not a veteran of the safari circuit.  One trip over 25 years ago and a second recently hardly qualifies.  Nevertheless, I have travelled quite a a lot with camera gear and I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about the gear to take because of the both the…