Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Black Guillemot,s

On a recent trip to Scotland we paid a visit to Oban,s Black Guillemot colony which just happen to breed in and around the harbour walls , making it easy for photography. They did not disappoint with around a dozen birds performing well early one morning even coming to sit on the steps next to the road.
If you want to see these charming little fellows close up then Oban is the place.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Garden Bees

I have been interested in Bee photography for a couple of years now but this year I am taking it a little more seriously . With our garden now in full bloom Bee's are everywhere and what a challenge it is , not only trying to photograph them but identifying them is even more of a headache.
Buff-tailed.
Common Carder.
Tree Bumblebee.
Red-tailed.
Red Mason.
As yet Unidentified .
As yet Unidentified.

Garden Moths

As you can see from the post below Tracey has done a excellent job of turning the garden into a insect friendly garden well done my dear. Moths are now coming on a regular bases and with the different varieties of flowers they are spoilt for choice , below are a few images from this weekend.
Ghost Moth.
Beautiful Golden Y.
Peach Blossom.
Buff-Tip.
Common Marbled Carpet.
Small Magpie.
Pebble Hook-Tip.
Poplar Hawkmoth.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Overgrown to Insect Home !!!!

I have always loved plants and flowers but never really had a garden until we moved into this house only twelve weeks ago .. Lately Steve has begun to get more and more interested in his bugs and bees so with this in mind I decided to create a garden with plants and flowers that attracted such insects .... At first sight the garden was no more than an overgrown piece of land with not a flower in sight but what it had going for it was it was not overlooked and was a lovely sun trap ... Well if it was a challenge I wanted this was it !!!!
Where to start ..... As I had brought a lot of plants with me from the wood my first priority was to get the raised beds weeded and my plants back in the soil .. It took most weekends and a few hours each night after work to eventually get it something like ..
Next job was to rebuild the rockery and build a new corner piece ...
Once this was done I decided it would probably look nice with a path up to the shed as it would break up the expanse of grass , what I didn't realise was how much hard work it would be due to the soil here is mainly clay ....
A ton of gravel later and the path was finished .... So what else should every bug garden have ??? A POND ... Days more digging and the pond arrived ..
and finally the last piece of garden was my little woodland area laid with tree bark and my new stone bench ...
At last the garden was done now all we had to do was wait for it all to grow and for the bugs and bees to move in and for us to sit back and enjoy it ...
So now Steve has his own little bug playground and in the last couple of weeks he has had many different bees and at night moths galore so all the hard work has paid off and he is one happy bunny !!!!

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Great Skua Westport Lake Staffs

What a bird found by Mr Westport himself Nick Smith the Great Skua was located early morning and instantly put out on all forms of media well done Nick. I watched all day as the bird was reported still being present on Staffs Bird news , RBA , Twitter and others. I was eager to get there but had to wait until I finished work which was not until 17-00 some 12 hours after it was found would it stay. Last time I saw one of these beauties inland was Draycote water many years ago and was lucky enough to get a boat out to photograph it at close quarters. When I left work at 17-00 the heavens opened and I decided to go home for tea first , then myself and Trace made our way to Westport in the pouring rain . The bird was quickly located about 100 yds off the left hand side of the lake . Tracey decided to sit it out in the car and very wet me decided to try and capture some images , one hour later and very very wet I managed something reasonable I think.
A very distant and very wet Great Skua .

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Seil Delights !!!!

As it has been a hectic few months what with a new house and new job I couldn't wait for our holiday . This one was new ground for both of us which made it even more exciting . The main purpose for this area was to try and find the Chequered Skipper a small butterfly only found in a small wood by a loch . Luck was on our side with the glorious sunny weather that Scotland had had for a few weeks meant it had bought the little chap out in good numbers ....
Also while we were in the wood we had been told the Golden Ringed Dragonflies had been seen and just by chance we saw a single one fly by ..
After dinner and mission fulfilled in the first morning we headed to Oban where we were staying the night .. After checking in we went a stroll down to the harbour to see if the Black Guillemots were about as this time of year they nest in the harbour walls ..
Next morning it was breakfast then off to our destination for the week Seil Island !!! It only took half an hour but the contrast from the bustle of Oban to the tranquillity of this beautiful little island was amazing .The island was once used by the slate workers and it was one of the old cottages we were staying in with a balcony over the lock .
Sun set from cottage.
The rest of the week was spent just wandering around the local harbour and lochs . As usual Jessica headed straight for the water ...
Not quite sure what she looking for ...... crabs .... maybe !!!!
That's what she thinks of having her photo taken !!!!
Dad then had to play and they were both off
While they were off playing I had chance to check out the rock pools ..
I was also joined by the locals ...
Another passion of mine is the flora and fauna these places hold . Every little nook and cranny has its own little garden ..
Scotland also has its own Orchids .. the pale pink of the Heath Spotted and the more darker purple of the Northern Marsh ...
Another one of Scotlands little beauties is the Beautiful Demoiselle and we had seen them in brief fly bys and it was only by chance as we drove down a lane to a local loch that Steve saw about six males playing in a small stream ...
Another day another loch and again hawk eyed Steve found a Red Throated Diver but this was a short and sweet meeting as within minutes it had gone ...
Something you don't want to find to often by a loch !!!!!
Wonderful weather and a wonderful week ... will finish with Jessica again doing what she does best now she an old lady ... BLESS ...