September 29, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

Welcome to another exciting installment of my photography exploits during September. Summer seems to be hanging on with plenty of of warm bright days and Autumn seems to be a bit later this year. Twice I've been to photograph the annual deer rut over the last ten days with not much action. We really need some very cold days to bring the deer on. I'm concentrating more on Richmond park this year as opposed to Bushy. I got fed up last year with groups of people chasing the stags round the park with mobile phones etc. At least with Richmond there is a lot more room for them.

Red deer (Cervus elaphus)Red deer (Cervus elaphus)Red deer (Cervus elaphus)
Richmond park, London.

Red deer stag & friend, Richmond Park.

The Autumn bird migration is now in full swing with plenty of birds stopping off in local reserves. They tend to take their time flying back as opposed to Spring when they are in a rush to breed. 

I managed to get good shots of kingfishers, egrets and waders at Slimbridge wetland centre. In my opinion this is one of the best places to watch the migration. Even more so in Winter when there are hundreds of Wintering ducks, geese & swans.

Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis)Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis)Common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis)
WWT Slimbridge.
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Juvenile kingfisher

Cattle egret (Bubulcus ibis)Cattle egret (Bubulcus ibis)Cattle egret (Bubulcus ibis)
WWT Slimbridge.
Cattle egret

I've lived in Oxfordshire now for two years and only just found out there was a falconry centre only a few miles away! So I booked a ticket online which is the norm these days and paid a visit. Plenty of birds and managed to get some great close up shots of my favourite bird of prey, the Red kite. I'll never forget the first time I saw a wild kite nearly twenty years ago which was on bike ride around the Chiltern hills on the Bucks/Oxon border. As I was busy looking up at it in awe I nearly collided with a tree! 

Red kite (Milvus milvus)Red kite (Milvus milvus)Red kite (Milvus milvus)
Millets Falconry Centre, Oxfordshire.
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Red kite at Millets Falconry, Oxfordshire.

I recently made a visit to Lancashire to see family and visit a couple of great nature reserves there namely Leighton Moss on the Lancs/Cumbria border and Martin mere wetlands. This time of year is good to see the elusive Bearded reedlings. A stunning seldom seen bird which prefers to stay in the reed beds. As their diet of insects changes to seeds they have to collect grit which helps break down the seeds in their stomachs. At Leighton Moss they put out grit on bird tables but most of the time they will use the grit off the pathways. I was lucky enough to see around 12-15 birds flitting between the reeds and paths for around twenty minutes. 

Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)
RSPB Leighton Moss, Lancashire.
Female bearded reedling

Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)
RSPB Leighton Moss, Lancashire.
Bearded reedling at RSPB Leighton Moss, Lancashire.

Juvenile greenfinch (Chloris chloris)Juvenile greenfinch (Chloris chloris)Juvenile greenfinch (Chloris chloris)
WWT Martin mere, Lancashire.
Juvenile greenfinch at Martin Mere wetlands centre, Lancashire.

To round off the month I made my final visit to Santa Pod Raceway of 2020 for my motorsport fix! It's been a short season this year due to the ongoing situation. To be honest I didn't think there would be any racing this year. I hope next year will be better for all our sakes.

Slingshot DragsterSlingshot Dragster32nd Hot Rod Drags
Santa Pod Raceway, Bedfordshire.
Slingshot dragster warming the rear tyres. Santa Pod.

Fly agaric (Amanita muscaria)Fly agaric (Amanita muscaria)Fly agaric (Amanita muscaria)
Harcourt Arboretum, Oxon.
The classic Fairytale mushroom, the Fly agaric

 Hopefully October will start to cool down so I can get some moody misty Autumnal shots. I've started to see plenty of fungi popping up. They like warm damp habitat and make good photographs especially if you find one with a Pixie on!!

If anyone is interested I've started my 1-2-1 photography tuition again. I find this very rewarding, teaching people of all abilities new photography skills. Not only from setting the camera up but to also editing the final image. You can use my CONTACT page for details and availability.

Thank you all for reading my latest blog and thank you all for your support and kind comments. I find nature is a great healer in difficult times. Even just sitting out in the garden or going for a short local walk. Nature is all around us.

Please continue to upload your photographs to my Photo's Page. There are some great photographs being posted.

Many more of my images can be viewed on my flickr page and Instagram.






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