The eyes of a Wolf always see straight into your soul ...

...You can't hide the truth from them


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Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The wonder of spring...

How can a season have such an effect on me? 

It's the energy and vibrance that the other creatures bring to it, together with all the flora, fauna and all manner of other beings/entities.

I've been photographing wildlife in Wollaton Park for a couple of hours a day over a period of 4 days and it's been amazing.

Sunlight always helps the process anyway but Monday had a definite - different - vibe.  Spring wasn't here just because my daffodils have come up or because some words and numbers on a calendar say so.  It was here because I could feel it in the air.  So could the other creatures I was watching.  There was a definite move towards their various mating rituals.

I've witnessed swans mating and photographed the courtship dance of a pair Great Crested Grebes.  I've also photographed a pair of Herons mating on their nest, as well as a pair of Coots.

The most difficult thing to photograph has been the rivalry amongst the Coots.  I have to admit to not being sure exactly what I was witnessing with the Coots as the males and females look the same to me.  I wasn't sure if male birds had harems and kept other males away or whether they just attacked other Coots for the hell of it ... but it made for some dramatic photos.  I hope I can get more of them in better light!

The Red Deer made another appearance in the water, this time at the other end of the lake, to the delight of the public.  Knowing they go through water and seeing them do it are two different things.  It still surprises me how gracefully they move in water too, especially with those impressive antlers!

The female Heron has been buildling her nest together with her male.  He keeps flying to the sides of the lake and coming back with long twigs and, sometimes, branches and then gives her a hand to work them into the nest structure.  The nest is a fair size now.  She allowed him to mate with her on Friday, so fingers crossed for them.

I feel very lucky to have been able to witness these sights and hope that you'll venture out and see them for yourselves.

All the best


Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Breeding season ...

The light was awful and the skies were drizzling rain upon us.  I'd taken a friend out on a photoshoot.  We'd met up an hour or so earlier and it was time to try to put some theory into practise, having gone over how to use aperture, shutter speed and ISO settings and how it all ties in.  If you can come up with a decent shot in these conditions, you'll have done ok.

I treated the walk around like a recce of the area.  Looking at where things were and what kinds of wildlife used the area.  There was the usual abundance of birds, local and migrant, around the main lake, as well as two herds of deer (red and fallow).

On the way back to the car I stopped to watch two Swans courting, ceremoniously cleaning them selves and posing gracefully for each other before the female allowed the male to mate with her.  It was another of those moments where the camera couldn't get the image stored to the memory card, however, my eyes could record the memory in my soul.

I've been back since and seen some beautiful sights:  Herons building nests on the nursery, various deer going about their daily lives and smaller birds selecting mates and getting their perspective breeding seasons under way.

Happy Spring season to you all.


Friday, 4 March 2011

Giving away secrets ...

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You may want to follow it through.  The advertisers are hoping you will.  They'll make it sound like they're going to give you a secret piece of info and before you know it, you'll be entering the last 3 digits off the back of your plastic.

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; )

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Getting back on course ...

I'm half way through the backups and the admin seems to be more or less up to date.

I see those tasks as chores - get them finished and I get some reward - going out to wildlife with my camera!

The breeding season's already started for some species.  There'll be various things to hear and see if you go through woods and forests quietly.  I'll be looking for kingfishers soon and trying to setup hunting perches for them to use in the hope of photographing them.

I'm also feeling the pull to get on the road somewhere.  The osprey will be coming in to Rutland soon.  Some of them perhaps stopping for a break before heading up to Scotland.  All my licences have been renewed and I'm eagely waiting for news that the first ospreys have arrived.  It'd be good to get some shots of nest building this year - pray for blue skies!



Osprey - Nature section

Osprey - Nature section
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