Sunday 30 June 2019

Peregrine falcons in the evening sunshine. North Cornwall. 30th June 2019.

Pleased to see all 3 of the young Peregrine falcons on the wing over the dramatic Cornish cliffs this evening.

Saturday 29 June 2019

Another visit to the Cornwall Beaver Project, June 26th 2019

I spent an enjoyable evening sat in a tranquil Cornish valley watching Beavers going about their daily lives as if they've never been gone from the Duchy.

In a short time they've transformed this valley by creating a super set of pools with dams and weirs that has attracted more than could have been expected so soon.

I sat and watched Emperor Dragonflies hawking for insects, a Grey Wagtail also looking to feed on the same insects and probably the dragonfly given half a chance!

Sparrowhawk & Jays, Swallows & House Martins were overhead before as dusk fell Bats swooped low over the water seeking their fill of the night flying creatures that these pools have now attracted.

But onto the Beavers.... Last years kits were active near to the lodge and it was great to see them do swallow-dives before disappearing into one of the underwater entrances to the lodge.

The matriarch put in an appearance, she can be identified by a rather mangled right ear lobe, but it was a fleeting view which adds to the hopes of our host Chris Jones, that she may be nursing a new litter of kits for this year.

I've had a great Spring & Summer wildlife watching this year and hope it continues the same way!

I also hope to get back to watch for a new generation of Beavers in the coming weeks.

The Matriarch

Thursday 27 June 2019

Gannets...... Bass Rock, Scotland Thurs 20th June 2019.

A Gannet colony is one of the greatest places a bird lover and photographer can go to!

This was my 9th landing on Bass Rock  at the mouth of the Firth of Forth just off North Berwick and perhaps 20 miles from Edinburgh.

I first visited with Dave Thomas in 1984 and made several more landings in the late 80's and also in the 90's.

The place never ceases to amaze me with the colour, the noise and of course the smell!

Numbers have continued to increase and it is the largest Gannet colony in the world... in fact the Scientific name for the gannet is Sula bassana after this rocky outcrop which is actually an old volcanic plug.

There are supposed to be in excess of 150,000 birds but I have to admit I didn't stop to count them.

When we first came we could walk over the concrete path to the far side of the island where the Trinity House guys used to maintain the foghorn. Now everything is automated for the horn & the lighthouse and the gannets are now covering almost all of the rock.

There are now a handful of pairs nesting at St.Abbs head amongst the guillemot colony a few miles down the coast.

Here are a couple of short video clips, apologies for the wind noise !


Sunday 23 June 2019

Puffins & Razorbills on Scottish Isles. June 18th-20th.

I've just spent 3 days "island hopping" in Scotland photographing seabirds.

The Puffins, Razorbills & Guillemots looked to be finding plenty of food with them all bringing back beakfulls of Sandeels and a few Herring.

Here are a few images from a brief scan through the many photos taken.

Thursday 13 June 2019

Ringing Barn Owls near home this evening. 13th June 2019

Visited 2 nest sites for Barn Owls this evening and both had young but at vastly different ages.

The first site had 4 young and 2 eggs, the eldest being not much more than 1 week old and the youngest possibly 1 day old.

Amazingly I counted 16 dead voles cached in the box for a rainy day.... and we're having lots of them at the moment!

Oh and I do hold a Schedule 1 licence to photograph them at the nest!

The 2nd site had 3 young that were probably 3 to 4 weeks old and well advanced.
We measured their weight and checked them over and all 3 looked to be females.