Saturday 28 May 2011

Final report from the Isle of Mull

Well my last day in Mull and we had some good light in fact, sunlight even occasionally, despite this it was all fairly quiet on the photo front. Did mange some image though, as usual! The tour finished at midday on Friday and I stayed on until Saturday in the hope of getting some more shots.  Unfortunately gale force winds picked up so that was the end of that idea. Still overall an excellent week and I look forward to going back next year possibly part of an Ebirder tour or on my own or both. I shall decide in the next couple of weeks, as there are only four places left on next years ebirder workshop/tour to the Isle of Mull. Hope you have all enjoyed the images over the last few days.  I also understand there is currently an issue for people leaving comments to get around this just don't tick the keep me signed in box.  Ok onto the final images: Oyster Catcher, Common Sandpiper, Otter and a couple of rubbish Landscape shots to demonstrate the typical lighting/weather.  Apparently it was all sunny and blue skies in April!!! Typical.

Common Sandpiper

Oyster Catcher

Otter with fish lunch




The road along the centre of Mull

Friday 27 May 2011

Isle of Mull day four, White Tailed Eagle and others.

With high winds our trip to photograph puffins was cancelled, instead we were offered the opportunity to photograph White Tailed Eagles again.  (not a bad replacement option, great in fact) Early morning seen us looking for the Short Eared Owl and Otters but neither came close enough for the camera. Conditions in the boat for the Eagle were well, rocking and rolling, to make photographing harder!! I will get onto the images as there are a few:

Willow Warbler

Red Deer

Rock Pipit

Highland Cattle

Great Northern Diver, 600mm lens hand held on a rolling boat somewhat tricky

Eagle circling to eye the fish, oh and my first image of blue sky on Mull!

Putting on the brakes before grabbing the fish

Got it first go!!

Just for size comparison, this is a huge bird bigger than a Golden Eagle

Another Dive to get a fish, totally focused on the target!

Short Eared Owl, a grab shot on the way back didn't quite come off so this was my useless attempt to turn it into an oil painting!!

Thursday 26 May 2011

Isle of Mull day three, Short Eared Owl

Another day on the Isle of Mull, today was fairly quiet except for the Short Eared Owl.  He hunted for quite a while but at some distance from the camera. Best view of the day though was a stunning male hen harrier, no pictures unfortunately but brilliant to see this awesome bird. As said here are the short eared owl pictures and a red deer also enjoying the pasture at the end. Tomorrow we visit the White Tailed Eagle again and having learned from the experience of my first attempt at photographing these birds I picked up some stunning shots, so worth a look in tomorrow.

Wednesday 25 May 2011

Isle of Mull day two report, Eagles and Otters

Well as predicted we were greeted with heavy rain and dismal lighting for most of the day. However on a plus side we certainly were not let down by the number of wildlife we had the opportunity to see and photograph. The major event of the day would be our boat trip to view and hopefully photograph White Tailed Eagles. These majestic birds were wiped out due to persecution and egg collecting and disappeared form mainland Britain for over fifty years. The last British bird was shot in Shetland in 1918, following a couple of trial releases the birds were re-introduced in 1975.  There are now believed to be over fifty breeding pairs. We were taken out on a boat, where the ships Captain is allowed to feed three fish only to the Eagles so the birds do not become dependant on his supply. Sometimes there is a no-show by the Eagle but we were in luck, and managed to get some images despite the poor light. Details On Isle of Mull Sea Eagle Trips can be found here. Well onto the images from the day, if you want to be super critical some are slightly blurred, lighting conditions were pants!!

Grasshopper Warbler

White Tailed Eagles scans the sea for the fish.

A successful take by the Eagle

Returning to the nest with the catch

Sabine's Gull, a bonus spotted on the return leg of the boat trip

Eider a difficult bird to photograph especially in poor light.

The Otter comes ashore to eat a large crab

Still enjoying the meal

Keeping a lookout whilst eating

Tuesday 24 May 2011

Oban and Isle of Mull day one report

My first full day on the Isle of Mull and it was raining heavily!!! We took the ferry back over to Oban we although dark and cloudy with showers, it did give us the opportunity for some photography.  The subjects here were Black Guillemot's, which sometimes reside in the storm drains on Oban's promenade. Here we did observe one attacking a Rock Dove which was also trying to shelter in the drain. After this we headed back to Mull and took the road from Salen around the centre of the Island photographing waders etc and again sighting an otter. So despite the rain which would continue for much of the week some good photography was achieved, I think? In tomorrow's report, amongst others, I will be posting my first images of White Tailed Sea Eagles.

Black Guillemot, Oban

Black Guillemot in the storm drain at Oban

Common Sandpiper

A rather drowned looking Hooded Crow


Waders, sitting out the rain


Two Oyster Catchers, who were not to keen to see each other, these two were fighting for a good few minutes.

Red Deer, of which there are quite a few on the Isle

Monday 23 May 2011

Isle of Mull, Introduction

Well I arrived on the Isle of Mull on the 15th of May, the night prior to the wildlife photography workshop run by Marcus Conway of ebirder . I met up with Marcus and went for a quick drive before the remainder of the party pitched up. This is where I gained these initial images, nothing brilliant but some great images to follow later (mainly White Tailed Eagles and Otters) I have another four/five days of images to post as soon as I can, so call back if you wish to see what Mull has to offer.

Great Northern Diver


Otter, my first sighting on Mull

Wednesday 11 May 2011

Preparations for Mull

Well first of all apologies for the lack of posts lately I have been laying low because of a cold/flu bug. Typical we have the warmest April for years and I still get flu. Well I visit Mull next week for the first time, hopeful of getting images of Sea Eagles, Otters, Puffins etc all weather permitting of course!! Lots of equipment to take for different situations so I have my checklist and hopefully nothing is missing off it. A long drive ahead from Cornwall to the Isle of Mull, I will be setting off Thursday/Friday going as far as Carlisle and then completing the last leg of the journey on Sunday to capture the ferry to Mull around 2pm. I have chosen to visit with  well it it my first visit so I thought it would be a good idea just to book a workshop to get the benefit of all the local knowledge and even some photo tips. So all things going well there should be some new images appearing here on/around the 22nd May. I will also catch up on the blogs then.

Saturday 7 May 2011

Great White Egret at Marazion

Ok not posted for a while, bit of a pants day at Marazion, light wise and the bird remained distant so just record shots today.

Size comparison between the little and Great Egrets

Great White Egret.

Monday 2 May 2011

Windy Weekend

Well pictures were hard to get this weekend strong winds and low light, two of the photographers enemies were against me so very little to show at present.

Sand Martin at Crofts Pool low light and strong wind made it almost impossible to nail these flying bullets so I gave up!

Four Spotted Chaser, Crofts Pool

Wheatear taken at Marazion in very strong winds.

Two Whimbrel on the marsh, well it was just slightly less windy than the beach.