Hibernation Time

November 11, 2018 at 6:54 pm

IMG_9359For the last couple of weeks the Hedgehog in this weeks photo has been visiting our garden later and later each evening. It finally got to 10.00pm before the food was left overnight and it must now be curled ups in a bed of leaves until next Spring. Lets hope that we don’t have any unseasonal mild spells over winter to cause it to awaken which would be a disaster.click here
We have just returned from a wild week on Islay and the next couple of weeks galleries will be full of Whooper Swans and Geese.

Trick Or Treat

November 4, 2018 at 9:01 pm

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The 31st October is a special day and I don’t think I have ever taken any photos on that day before. The weather was perfect but the subject matter extremely wary. In two hours under the camouflage cloth I only managed a couple of photos, one of which is this weeks blog photo.
In the late afternoon I hid awaiting the local Barn Owl to start hunting. Five minutes before sunset it appeared along a hawthorne hedge that was covered in berries. Although it never came close the gallery photos have a perfect Autumn atmosphere with plenty of red visible.click here

Seaside Geese

October 28, 2018 at 7:31 pm

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On one of those superb recent Autumn days I visited the coast at Southport to look for Waders. Not a wader in sight but Geese were everywhere including one group of 14,000 Pink Footed Geese! Grey Lags and Canadas were also feeding in the salt-marsh and the best bird seen was a distant hunting Peregrine which is included in this weeks Gallery for record purposes.  Some Waxwings are in Scotland so fingers crossed for a visit locally this year! click here

Barn Owl Appears

October 21, 2018 at 1:55 pm

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For the first time in two decades a Barn Owl has been seen hunting locally around Hopwood woods. At this time of the year it is almost certainly a young bird of the year that is now looking for a good feeding area for winter. Come Springtime its thoughts will move to breeding and who knows where it will settle. Until then it has to contend with such lethal Barn Owl killers as the motorway and the railway – good luck.
To remind us how good a hunting Barn Owl is this weeks gallery is devoted to them. click here
During the past week I have encountered such contrasting migrants as a Swallow and a Fieldfare.

The Last Commas

October 14, 2018 at 1:43 pm

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During the exceptionally warm days of last week I was out locally looking for late butterflies. Several Commas were encountered plus Large White, Speckled Wood, Small Copper with just a single Red Admiral. With a max. temperature of 24degrees it is not surprising that some butterflies are still on the wing, but for how much longer? Click here
On the 9th October I found my first Redwing and migrant Long Eared owl so as soon as the wind moves from its recent southerly direction the Autumn/Winter migrants will flood in.

Reflections Of Summer

October 7, 2018 at 5:58 pm

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Todays blog photo is of a Green Woodpecker sunbathing on a standing stone. Most nights last summer as I was on my way up onto the moors to film the Owls this Green Woodpecker was sunbathing on the top of a standing stone. It is only a record shot, as there was no way of getting any closer, but it shows that we were not the only inhabitants of the Pennines to enjoy that fabulous weather.
On the 7th October I flushed the earliest Jack Snipe that I have ever recorded. Ironically at the same time I still had a Chiff-chaff singing before leaving for Africa. Last winter I found only two Jack Snipe that didn’t fly off first so this weeks gallery is to remind us what we are looking for in the months ahead! click here

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