Trollfjord, Lofoten Islands, Norway
The Trollfjord stretches almost north to south between islands in the Lofoten archipelago off the northern coast of Norway. We were on a Hurtigruten coastal cruise between Bergen and Kirkenes in the north, close to the border with Russia. On the southbound journey, we transferred to a small boat alongside the MS Finnmarken. The boat MS Orca, was from Lofoten Charterbat, a family company from the town of Svolvær. We made our way down the fjord searching for white tailed eagles. Almost immediately we were joined by a flock of herring and black backed gulls that were fed by the boatman. Within minutes the first white tailed eagle appeared and a fish was thrown over the side. With the engine stopped the boat drifted and we waited for the eagle to swoop in and take the fish. The eagle was not always successful and this underlines the skill required to take fish, even dead ones, from the water. In all we saw possibly 5 or 6 different eagles, the majority were immatures birds. It take five years to reach maturity.
Namibia is a country with a wide variety of eco-systems and landscapes. This is a small sample of the variety of birds and animals found in Namibia.
Romania and the Danube Delta
The vast waterways that form the Danube Delta on its way to the Black Sea is full of surprises of wildlife and landscapes.
Southern Florida – 2015
The visit to south Florida in December 2015 was a great opportunity to get close to some photogenic birds and other wildlife. Ospreys, a rare sight in the UK were visible almost everyday taking huge fish in their talons.
Wildlife on the Eastern Slopes of the Ecuador Andes
In November 2016, I visited the northern part of Ecuador with my wife and two friends, to explore the wildlife and the landscapes. Starting in Quito we spent the first week on the western slopes of the Andes and then moved across to the eastern side where we spent three days at the San Isidro Lodge.
Photographing birds in tropical rainforest conditions is always a challenge. Particularly as the best opportunity for observing the birds is first thing in the morning as the sun is rising. There is limited light in the forest at the best of times, but as the sun is trying to break through the clouds, a flashgun is essential equipment. At the Lodge, they keep some of the lights illuminated throughout the night to bring in the moths and the early birds take advantage of the moths as they go to rest in the foliage, moss and bark in the nearby trees. Watching the tree creepers probe the crevices with their beaks pulling out their breakfast is a great spectacle. The Lodge also illuminate a white sheet during the night where moths come to rest and these are an easy meal for other birds. Two Inca jays seem to realise that this is a good source of food and they were picking the moths off the sheet.
On our second night at the Lodge, a group of Canadian cyclists arrived. We learnt that they were a group of friends who turned their enjoyment of cycling into a means of raising money for charities. Their journey in Ecuador across the Andes and into the Amazon basin was raising money for the International Justice Mission (IJM), an organisation that advocates and legally fights for poor people and victims especially of sexual abuse. The IJM works with local law enforcement and with the local judiciary as well as government. It provides street level support to vulnerable people. In conversation with their leader, Frank de Walle, I talked about my own work in South America with psychologists, judges, prosecutors and NGOs to improve the effectiveness of investigations into allegations of child sexual abuse. After dinner, Frank invited me to talk about these issues to give his colleagues some insights into the pattern of child sexual abuse in South America. This work is supported by the British charity, The Child Protection Development Trust.
I subsequently learned from Frank that they raised over $100,000 for the International Justice Mission to support their work in Bolivia.
These images were taken during a visit to Kathmandu and the teri area of southern Nepal. Unfortunately, only weeks after we returned home, there was a devastating earthquake a few kilometres west of the capital.
This is about goldcrests.
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