Wednesday, 19 September 2018


I met up with one of the gents from our local Bird Club who told me a Kingfisher was being seen on a regular basis at Kelham Bridge Reserve so I decided to have a quick visit to see if my luck was in. As I opened the window  in the hide the Kingfisher flew away but I had regular visits over the next 45 minutes, they are really such a beautiful little bird.

I then on the Thursday had a visit to the Egleton Reserve at Rutland Water, we are in the spell between Summer visitors departing and Winter birds arriving with just a few birds still passing through on the way South. I had an enjoyable afternoon and a good walk, this time without the rain.

I also had an e mail from my friend Reg to say he had a Tawny Owl in a tree in his garden, asking if there was any way to encourage the bird to stay. I put him in touch with the Hawk and Owl Trust {East Midlands} who appear to be keen to erect a Tawny box in his garden.

I visited on Sunday afternoon and after a considerable time I eventually managed to locate the bird sat in the top of a very large tree. It was a case of getting the camera on the tripod and keep moving around until I could get a reasonable image through a tangle of branches and leaves. I finished with the camera virtually sat vertical on my tripod with me on one knee, but at least I saw a Tawny.

11th September.

We had a reasonable afternoon with some sun and as the reserve is very close to home I was on site in a matter of minutes unlike some of my other excursions.

Male Kingfisher, Hide Two, Top Pool.

Upon entering the hide I had a quick look through the gap in the top of the window shutter and could see the bird, but upon opening the shutter the bird flew away, only to return a few minutes later as it did for most of the time I was in the Hide. A really wonderful afternoon.

He caught numerous fish, but as hard as I tried to get a flight image I had to admit defeat.
Will try again another day.


They really are such a flashy little bird, a delight to watch.

Grey Squirrel, Hide One, Lower Pool.

As much as I dislike the Grey Squirrel, its very difficult not to take an image. I visited the Hide to see what birds were about the feeders and only managed the Squirrel.
If I get them near the Barn Owl boxes I'm afraid they have to leave the garden.

12th September.

I was upstairs working at home when my wife called me to say have a look at the bird on the fence, so it was a case of get the camera, open the window and try to get an image or two.

Juvenile Female Sparrow Hawk.

I was lucky to get these images as she did not hang about very long and soon flew away.

Such a beautiful head.

Had a call from my friend Rhys to ask if he could putan image of the Sparrow Hawk on his Twitter page to which I agreed. He phoned me later in the day to say he had done this and had 44,000 hits on it and one from Chris Packham saying "Top Bird! Nice Pic" so thanks to Rhys.


13th September.

I arrived at the centre at approximately 13.00 hrs and after a quick chat and a check of any birds about I got underway to see what I could see, the truth being it was reasonably quiet as we seem to between birds going and Winter visitors arriving. I saw a few female Ruff who will be on the way South, they are left to fend for themselves by the males who head South once the young are hatched and the females follow on much later.

I had a visit around most of the Hides but nothing of great excitement was seen.  


Female Ruff, Shoveler Hide, Lagoon 3.

Most of these birds will be passing through on the way South to Africa and Southern Europe. Some however will over Winter in the UK.

Green Sandpiper, Shoveler Hide, Lagoon 3.

Another favourite bird but it was such a distance away so image heavily cropped.

Why is it when they come close they then turn there backs towards you, sods law.

Lapwing, Shoveler Hide, Lagoon 3.

Numbers of these birds are certainly building up as Autumn arrives.

Little Egret, Grebe Hide, Lagoon 2.

I was hoping to see the larger cousin but non showed whilst I was around. Some on Lagoon 1 but about 600 metres distant.

16th September.

I had an e-mail from my friend Reg to say he had a Tawny Owl in his garden and this was followed on the Saturday whilst watching a game of rugby with an invite to take some images for him and his wife, which I took the offer up immediately, not many chances to see a Tawny.
On arrival we walked to the tree and could see nothing of the owl but eventually after a considerable time I managed to find the bird, right in the top of the tree and very difficult to see through a tangle of branches and leaves.
So it was get the camera onto the tripod and try to find a way through the tree to get a reasonable image. 
This proved a challenge but eventually with the help of the bird I have the results below.
Whilst taking the images, we heard a second bird calling very close by.

Juvenile Tawny Owl.

Having eventually found the bird, this was one of the first images through the tree, it was a case of slowly moving the tripod to the left and slightly forward, then eventually.

Then the bird helped by moving slightly to its right.

It certainly had us spotted but did not appear at all concerned.

I can only thank Reg and Jill for this wonderful opportunity to see a Tawny Owl plus I got a cup of coffee and biscuits, and they are pleased with the images. I will give an update if a box is erected.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit as much as I did in the getting of the images.

About Me;

Titus White:
Hi I am Richard Peglers friend Titus White, and those who follow Richards posts will understand the name and reason for it. I have been birding with Richard for 3 years and a volunteer at Rutland Water on the Osprey Project for 2 years. My early images were taken on a Nikon D80 with a 70 - 200mm lens. I updated the lens to a 70 - 300mm VR lens but still was not happy with the results. Eventually when Nikon announced the D7100 I decided to change so upgraded the camera and also invested in a Sigma 50 - 500mm lens.
I first met Richard through Arthur Costello as I was having the occasional visit from Little Owls on our land. We eventually found the Little Owls through another contact about 100 metres away. Photo's will follow on future posts.
I have recently upgraded my camera to full frame, this is a challenge I am at the moment enjoying trying to get the best out of the beast.
Free counters!