Saturday, May 24, 2008

You little beauties!

All in all it's been a pretty good week, and there's a fair few snaps below to prove the point. There are much better quality versions on the web album, so please use the link to take a look.
It started with a trip back to my local copse, and finally a nice sharp image of a starling at a nest hole. You can see a rat tailed maggot in it's bill - well you can on a better quality version.
Then it was a trip up north, when I took the chance to visit a place Chris Grady had recommended - Cromford Canal in Derbyshire. It's famous for water voles - the BBC did a documentary filmed there - but must also be one of best places to see and photograph that favourite bird of mine, the dabchick or little grebe (or little footy-arse as a very old blog entry describes).
The water voles were there and did their bit. The light wasn't bad and the water is fabulously clear as at least one shot shows. (Watching the grebes swim underwater was a real eye-opener for me in the UK.) The first shot shows how close you can be - although you'll guess that from the pictures. (I later found out that this photographer was Jodie Randall - unusual in my experience, being a young lass seriously interested in nature photography - click on the link to her website. Don't get me wrong I know there are some young nature photographers, and great women nature photographers, but all I ever seem to meet are middle aged men, half of whom don't even seem to want to get their knees dirty! Mind you the cost of camera kit may be a factor from the age perspective).
This is a cropped shot as I loved the image of the paws and the 'impressionist' leaf.
This is a crop of the crop because I like this bit of the image especially!
To cap everything off I was wandering in the Forest of Dean today and sat to watch a tree with a few holes to see what appeared, if anything. Most of the time you draw a blank, and sure enough nothing used the holes I had seen, but there was something in the treetop. Disbelievingly I finally got my bins on a lesser spotted woodpecker - first ever. But there was more - around the side of the tree was a 10p sized hole - well not much bigger - where these two sparrow-sized beauties were feeding their brood. Fantastic! Light wasn't great, and there were a lot of little twiggy branches in the way, but I did get some shots (shown mostly as crops and sadly at ISO 400 - not great on the 400D), but the pictures were second best to the experience.

No comments: