Monday, August 25, 2014

Preparing for the Rut - August 2014

A visit to Bradgate park showed us the Fallow deer are preparing for an early rut, there was no sign of the Red deer but I'm sure they'll put in and appearance when they're ready.

1/1600 @ f7.1, iso 1600, 400mm
The folly Old John, on the high point of the park always draws people to it and the view around is worth the climb.

1/400 @ f7.1, iso 800, 400mm
These stags look very laid back, resting for what's to come no doubt.

1/500 @ f7.1, iso 800, 250mm

1/400 @ f7.1, iso 800, 400mm
And this one wanted to pose and preen for the camera

1/320 @ f7.1, iso 800, 235mm
1/250 @ f7.1, iso 800, 400mm
This younger one was playing and copying the older deer by trying to collect vegetation on  his antlers, the trouble is the weren't big enough to keep it there.

And this is one of the adults he was trying to copy, first time I've put a video up so I hope it works for you.

All taken on Canon EOS7d, EF 100 - 400mm L series Zoom

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Birds and the Bees and Butterflies August 3rd 2014

There wasn't a lot of wildlife about today but somethings of interest raised their heads.

A Red Admiral was hopping about from bloom to bloom, but would not settle with its wings open so I could get a decent picture of his markings.
1/2656 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

A Comma wasn't as shy and was happily sunbathing completely unconcerned about the lens pointing at him.

1/500 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

And this bee was not going to give up its meal for anyone, it didn't even have time to groom itself. Either that or it was a Punk Bee :o)

1/800 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

Further round a Cormorant found a small open area in all the weeds that the parks people have left to clog up the lakes. The whole park will soon be a no go area as Mossies start breeding in the stagnant pools, maybe that's why they closed down the most popular car park.

1/800 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

The Cormorant seemed to give up the struggle with the weeds and flew away to one of the few lakes still free from them.

1/3200 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

1/3200 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

1/3200 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

A Moorhen made use of an abandoned Coots nest, it was the only place in another totally clogged lake.

1/80 @ f7.1,  iso 400, 400mm

All taken on a Canon EOS 7d, EF 100 - 400mm L series lens

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Butterflies at Sheepwash Lane 15 July 2014

For the first time since I got the mobility scooter, we took it to Sheepwash Lane. We couldn't go before they had workmen and it became very muddy, then we had to wait for everything to settle down.

There's not much in the way of birds down there, although there is a Kingfisher about and one day I might get a photo of it. Instead there are more butterflies than I have seen all year.

After only a few minutes the first one presented itself, a Skipper on a thistle head.

1/320 @ f7.1, iso 400, 380mm
Not very far away was this Ringlet, but with a bit of a breeze most weren't happy to spread their wings.
1/500 @ f7.1, iso 400, 400mm
The skipper was still crawling around the thistle head so I took a pic of his back.
1/500 @ f7.1, iso 400, 400mm
and his front ...
1/400 @ f7.1, iso 400, 400mm
I always like to see Peacock butterflies, but again it would have been better if he'd spread his wings.
1/500 @ f8, iso 400, 400mm
In a more sheltered area the Tortoiseshell was happy to show off its colours.
1/500 @ f8, iso 400, 400mm
1/500 @ f8, iso 400, 400mm

All taken on a Canon EOS7d, fitted with EF 100 - 400mm L series lens

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Flies United - 20 June 2014

Watermead park was quiet, I don't know where all the interesting wildlife disappears to at his time of year. I know some of the birds return to Africa and elsewhere, but the non-migratory birds seem to go into hiding.

Anyway the  Damselflies were making up for it in the heat of the day, I just caught a flash of blue but with my current eye problem I couldn't focus on it properly and had to rely on the camera to do the work.  I was really pleased when I realised I'd got the female as well.

1/1000 @ f6.3, iso 400, 400mm

1/1600 @ f6.3, iso 400, 400mm
There were some of the more common varieties about like this juvenile coot.
1/400 @ f6.3, iso 400, 275mm
And this Mallard
1/1328 @ f6.3, iso 400, 400mm

All taken on Canon EOS7d, EF 100 - 400mm L series lens

Monday, June 16, 2014

Coot Fight

A couple of belligerent coots decided to have a set-to just as we arrived  at  the top pool at Sence Valley country park near Ibstock.

All taken on Canon EOS7d with EF 100 - 400mm L series lens
1/2565 @ f6.3, iso 800, 400mm

Saturday, May 24, 2014

An Hour in the Woods - 23 May 2014

We managed to slip out for an hour between rain showers yesterday and took Skipper to Swithland woods. I sat in the car while Maja spread the bird food and took the dog for his walk.

At first I thought I would be unlucky, but after ten minutes a Nuthatch did a flyby and shortly afterwards landed to partake of the free meal.
1/250 @ f5.6, iso 1600, 400mm
1/400 @ f6.3, iso 1600, 400mm
I don't think he was sure which was his best side so he showed me both during his frequent visits.

A Robin approached from the other side of the drive but wouldn't come to the stump and get food,  I guess it was in another Robin's territory. So I took pictures of him on the low fence posts.

1/400 @ f6.3, iso 1600, 400mm
1/400 @ f6.3, iso 1600, 400mm
I think he heard the camera shutter though because he looked straight at me.

Then I caught a movement on one of the trees behind him and realised it was a treecreeper. I have occasionally seen treecreepers but never managed to photograph one, so I was over the moon to get these pictures.
1/160 @ f6.3, iso 3200, 400mm
1/125 @ f6.3, iso 3200, 400mm
1/100 @ f6.3, iso 3200, 400mm

Some of these subjects were some distance away and in low light so not as sharp as they might be, but I was just pleased to get them, particularly the treecreeper.

All taken on a Canon EOS7d and EF 100 - 400mm L series lens