Wednesday, 28 December 2011

new camera #2

Ginger santa (sister) obviously has more money than sense as she splurged a few hundred beans on a new camera for her dear brother and today was the day that I finally found enough time to get out and about and see what it could do....its only got a couple of baby lenses with it so im not expecting the world but as something to help me figure out the basics of bird photography this should work quite nicely. So, off I headed today to find some owls to point the camera at. For those who were out in the midlands area today you will know for the most part it was a glorious sunny day with loads of lovely lovely light to illuminate the owly goodness - the downside was the wind! By heck it were windy today! And that put the owls off. Out of the 15+ visits I've made to the site this winter today was the worst in terms of numbers of owls seen, the range at which they were seen from and the duration they spent in view. So all in all a pretty poor day really although I still saw 5, maybe 6 Short Eared Owls though which on face value sounds pretty good......

Thursday, 22 December 2011

birdwatching! patch tick na na naaaa

I've managed to do some birdwatching of sorts over the past few days - i'm itching to get over to Rutland in the near future but haven't managed it so far, a trip to the owls yesterday produced this image with the new phone:

And i've just spent the best part of an hour down at Jubilee park fulfilling my resolution to visit the "local patch" more least its only about a month inbetween visits this time! It did further highlight that I do see new/mildly interesting stuff there if I actually visit - today it was a possible patch tick Grey Wagtail on the river (can't remember if i've seen one here before or not, certainly not for the past two years or so) and a definite patch tick Weasel that was hunting along the opposite bank. Other stuff seen included a Little Grebe on the river (river tick), two male Greater spotted Woodpeckers in the same tree and precisely 6 Wigeon on the pool. Oh and a Kestrel provided the raptor supplement for the day, combined with a Sparrowhawk that went over the house earlier. No images unfortunately except this one of the lovely vista of the river/test gravel pool at Jubilee.....

In terms of garden watching i've been trying to get decent images of the Bullfinch that have been visiting lots recently but I've not been getting on too well, firstly the birds are reluctant to come to the nearer of the two sets of feeders (even if I put their favoured sunflower dispenser on that feeder pole) and secondly any sunlight that graces the garden in the afternoons comes from a terrible angle. Here are the best of a bad bunch:

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

New camera!

I've lured you in thinking i've got some dangerous SLR beastie haven't I? Well unfortunately that isn't the case, i've merely upgraded my phone. To a shiny new samsung galaxy s2 that has a whopping 8 megapixel camera attached to it. Considering my old phone had a shameful 5 megapixel bag of turds attached to it this must thus be regarded as a technological advancement on par with the invention of the wheel. By my estimates I should be able to produce 60% better images now!

A veritable plethora of assignments and suchlike has prevented me from doing any birding over the past couple of weeks except a couple of quick visits to see the Short eared Owls on the way back from uni so over the past two days I've been having a quick blast at the birds in the garden to see what sort of images I could attain with the new toy:

there's a few of these around at the minute.

and loads of these...

about 5 or 6 of these too....

but only one of these!!!

damn you autofocus!


terrible image (i can still do those) of a coal tit.

hungry goldie

perching goldie

perching bluey