Welcome to my latest account of photographic antics from April!
You normally associate April with storms and showery weather but we've had a bit of everything from record temperatures at Easter to icy cold blast from the East and Storm Hannah which didn't really affect Oxfordshire. A couple of fallen branches and a wheelie bin on its side was all the damage I came across! I visited a couple of new locations such as Rutland water in search of Ospreys and found a location near to me for the red kites. They actually spend most of the day eating worms in a field!
Red kite 'hunting' for worms!
At the start of April I decided to visit Rutland Water nature reserve in search of Ospreys. I had never seen a wild one only captive. Arriving at the visitor centre I was informed by the very helpful staff that 21 birds had recently returned from West Africa and a pair were incubating eggs. I managed a few distant shots of six different birds. Apparently the eggs are due to hatch shortly so a return visit is on the cards. Both parents will be kept busy fishing (fish is their staple diet) for their off-spring. It's a great reserve spread over a large area with plenty of small pools and lagoons.
Osprey at Manton Bay, Rutland Water.
Cormorant drying its wings at Rutland Water.
April marks the return of lots of Summer migrants such as swallows, warblers and the elusive Cuckoo. Sometimes heard but rarely seen. I visited RSPB Otmoor to see what had turned up and as I set off from the car park a Cuckoo flew over head. Of course I missed the shot but got some shots of other visitors. All morning I could hear the cuckoo mocking me from afar knowing I'd missed the shot!
Reed warbler at RSPB Otmoor, Oxfordshire.
Arctic tern at Farmoor reservoir, Oxfordshire.
Hare at RSPB Otmoor. A great place for hares.
At Easter I spent a couple of days in my native Lancashire visiting RSPB Leighton Moss, RSPB Marshside & Pennington Flash. all great havens for wildlife.
Mr Kingfisher showing off with a fish at Pennington Flash, Lancashire.
Pied avocet at RSPB Marshside, Southport.
The British wildlife centre is a place I try to visit every month. Probably the best place to see British wildlife up close in natural enclosures which make for great photographs. Well worth a visit at any time of the year.
Tawny owls at the British wildlife centre, Surrey.
'Flo' the red fox vixen at the British wildlife centre, Surrey.
Below are a couple of photographs taken only a few miles from where I live.
Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway, Oxfordshire.
Pitstone windmill, Buckinghamshire.
That's about it for now folks. I hope you've enjoyed my latest photographic exploits. For next month I'm planning a return trip to Rutland. Hopefully a visit to Bempton cliffs on Yorkshire's east coast for the seabirds and a visit to Santa Pod Raceway for my motorsport fix!
Please continue to upload your photographs to my Photo's Page. There are some great photographs being posted.
More of my images can be viewed on my flickr page.