Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Grey Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis)

A simple enough shot – the key was exposing correctly for the squirrel in the face of a bright background – but it has, I think, a nice sense of habitat and behaviour.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/250th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 400

Monday, 28 November 2011

Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto)

Such a familiar bird that it's easy to forget just how pretty it is. A jacket playing the role of a bean bag made this late afternoon shot possible at a very low shutter speed.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/85th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 500

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)

The light was poor and I cursed myself later for not having framed in all of the bird's tail feathers, but I still like the feel of the shot. The Lapwing's petrol green plumage seems perfectly in keeping with the background and the milky reflection is wonderful.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/60th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 800

Friday, 25 November 2011

Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus)

I had my lens trained on a Long-tailed Tit for the last few shots of today when this Sparrowhawk attempted to take a Blue Tit on a neighbouring branch. It missed, but obligingly stayed for a few seconds, no doubt cursing its luck. The light was failing badly, so the image is no keeper, but it's still a handsome bird of prey and I feel privileged to have witnessed it hunting at close quarters.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/160th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 500

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus)

Another from lunchtime today. The shot's strength, I think, is the bird's quiet dignity and the muted tones of the sympathetic background.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/200th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 500

Another Coal Tit

Too gloomy today to get anything with much detail, but this shot of a Coal Tit (Periparus ater) taken at lunchtime just about makes the grade, principally because I like the simplicity of the composition.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/640th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 1,000

Egyptian Geese (in a tree)

I knew that here in North Norfolk you can find the highest concentrations in the UK of Egyptian Geese (Alopochen aegypticus), which were introduced to Britain 300 years ago. I also knew that they are comfortable perching and even roosting in trees. Still, on the school run this morning, the sight of this pair perched high in a tree quite some distance from the nearest meaningful water is not what I expected to see. A goose in a tree. It's not right…


Monday, 21 November 2011

Coal Tit

Another from the weekend. The architectural lines of the ring feeder are surprisingly photogenic.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/100th sec, f/8, 400mm at ISO 500

Coal Tit

Simply no chance to get out today, so here's a shot of a Coal Tit from the weekend. I love the way the bird appears to be guarding the mealworm trapped under its right foot and the background – so beautifully linking to the shade of the sunflower seeds – was an added bonus.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/100th sec, f/8, 400mm at ISO 500

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Blue Tit

A pleasing composition and today's milky sunshine in North Norfolk lent this shot a delicious feel.
Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/60th sec, f/9, 400mm at ISO 640

Robin (Erithacus rubecula)

The Long-tailed Tits chaotically descended on the garden for a few minutes (they always noisily announce their arrival with a choral 'chuck-chuck') and I managed to capture no decent shots. Then, as I was cursing my luck, this beautiful Robin loitered obligingly on the bird table for just long enough to get a nice study.
Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/60th sec, f/8, 400mm at ISO 800

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Great Tit

I was desperate for this shot to be sharp when I previewed it on the camera. I was disappointed, though, to find that the bird's head is far from in. I have included the picture here, however, because I love the late afternoon light coming through the tit's wing feathers and – despite its overall softness – the image does, I think, have a great feel to it.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/100th sec, f/7, 400mm at ISO 1,000

Robin (Erithacus rubecula)

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/60th sec, f/9, 400mm at ISO 1600

Coal Tits

In contrast to the last few days, today was beautiful and time in the garden was rewarded with some interesting shots, including these images of Coal Tits – one at the bird table, trying to decide between a peanut and a mealworm, and the other with a cherished sunflower seed.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/160th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 800



Friday, 11 November 2011

Coal Tit (Periparus ater)

A selection of shots taken in the garden this lunchtime on what was a horribly overcast day with ISO settings well into four figures.


Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Female Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)

There is, I think, a charming serenity in this shot. I am also drawn to the contrast between the delicacy of the bird's plumage and the harsh reality of the haw thorns and the cold efficiency of the bird's feet.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/85th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 500

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Coal Tit (Periparus ater)

This little chap seems so pleased with his sunflower seed find, almost smiling.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/320th sec, f/6.3, 400mm at ISO 640

Friday, 4 November 2011

Resting Blue Tit

Another low-light shot, but it does have a certain atmosphere.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/400th sec, f/5.6, 400mm at ISO 1,250

Out of the dark

More gloomy weather during my lunch break in the garden today, with these two the only half decent captures.

Canon 1Ds Mk II, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/125th sec, f/10, 400mm at ISO 640






















Canon 1Ds Mk II, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/60th sec, f/10, 400mm at ISO 640

Rare Elephant-nosed Blue Tit (Beakus giganticus)

I feel privileged to have captured this shot of the very rare Elephant-nosed Blue Tit. Photographing much more familiar garden birds, the camera was trained on a particular branch when this rarity landed, with a freshly grabbed sunflower seed. You will see immediately why the bird got its name – that beak is quite extraordinary. In a moment, of course, it was gone, but the vision of this never before seen visitor will last in the memory for ever.



Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Great Tit (Parus major)

Another day of poor light in the corner of the garden where the feeders are, but with this shot the combination of an ISO of 640 and image stabillization on the camera managed to capture just enough detail to make it worthwhile.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/50th sec, f/8, 400mm at ISO 640

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

One of our geese is missing…

A shot taken as part of an advertising campaign, but presented here because it still makes me smile.

Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon L 24-70mm lens, 1/100th sec, f/8, 70mm at ISO 200

Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus)

In terribly gloomy light, this beauty seemed to come out of the dark.



Canon 1Ds MkII, Canon 100-400mm L IS USM lens, 1/60th sec, f/8, 400mm at ISO 1,000