About Me

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I have been digiscoping for around 18 years now and through persistence and good equipment I am getting great results. I use a Swarovski 80hd spotting scope and a Sony RX100 camera which has just replaced my old faithful Nikon P5100. The majority of my bird watching takes place in County Durham in England which has a variety of different habitats from coast to moors. Digiscoping is great because it allows me to get good photos without disturbing birds. VIEW THE LATEST PHOTOBOOK AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Waxwings at Jarrow

Waxwings have been few and far between this year, again due westerly winds and probable bumper berry crops over in Scandinavia and Northern Europe.
The most reliable place to get them in the North East is probably at Saxon Way in Jarrow, I believe they have been there for 4 out of the last 5 years.

On the previous Friday I saw a flock of about 40 there, but by Monday this had reduced to about 20, and the berries had been ravaged off the trees too.
Conditions on both days I was there were very dull despite it being sunny when I left home 30 miles away. So I struggled with the digiscoping getting only a few shots worth keeping - but I still got some.
They are great birds to see even if you do not get shots of them.
Also only six miles away from the Waxwings was a pair of Glossy Ibis, too far away for any shots on this occasion though.

Kingfisher at Clara Vale

At last, I have been able to upload my pictures to blogger - the powers that be hadn't informed people that blogger no longer supports Windows Explorer and now have to use Google Chrome. Grrrr.

Finally I have managed to get some decent Kingfisher photos after months of only distant views.  This was mainly thanks to the rains that we have had and the fast flowing muddy rivers being very difficult for the Kingfisher to fish in.  So they move onto pools, ponds and lakes.
The bird kept moving around in the hour or so that it stayed in view. Which provided a variety of photos to be taken, with natural perches to stick perches that had been put in for the Kingfisher to nice distant scenic photos with the Kingfisher in.

I like the natural perches the best, but it often means that the bird is partially obscured by other twigs or like above with seed pods, this does not necessarily detract from the picture (except above there may be too much in the way), because it shows the environment that the birds are in. (Chris Packham would instantly throw it away I guess). But I quite like it.
The picture above was digiscoped at about 80 yards although I had to use the scope and camera on the minimum magnification to get the full reflection in. Not a huge amount of detail in the feathers of the kingfisher but it is a very pleasing scenic shot.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Some photos from over the christmas period

Black Grouse
I took my mate Pete up to see the Black Grouse in Teesdale area.  They put on a real good show and Pete was happy to get photos of the female.  They were right on the road side.

In the area we were looking the male and females were generally in different areas, perhaps the run up to the lekking season has started.

 The light was really atmospheric at times which helped to show Teesdale at it its best but this meant frequent showers, I managed to get this photo with the rainbow right over the chapel.
Pete also wanted to see the Great Grey Shrike at Bradbury and Bewicks Swan. Although we did catch a quick glimpse of the Shrike it didn't show well, so it was off to see the Bewick Swan at Sadberge.
This was easier to see as it was in a flooded field next to the road. I would not have identified this as Bewicks myself because the beak pattern is not obvious on this bird, however it is much smaller than the Whooper on the right. But it does seem strange that it has decided to hang around with 3 Whoopers!
The Kestrel below landed about 50 yards away from me while I was sat in a bird hide at Low Barns and was obviously searching for rodents from the tree. But before it could find any somebody else approached the bird hide and disturbed it.

Digiscoping Blog By Colin Severs

Digiscoping Blog By Colin Severs
Barn Owl in North Yorkshire