Sunday, 28 June 2015


We had our usual Thursday afternoon visit out with much improved weather than last week with nothing like the wind and very hot.

Richard arrived already one up on me with Little Owls, having seen a bird on his local patch on a Barn where part of the roof has collapsed and he hasn't seen a bird for a while but was delighted to see they were still in residence. We got on our way at 14.00 hrs and headed for Rutland Water with the intention to pass through our Little Owl sites on route. 

We arrived at Little Owl Site No 1. and Richard managed to spot an adult snoozing in the tree so images were taken by Richard {on both cameras}, he then spotted a Juvenile, our first of the year sat in the V of the tree not far from the adult. This was excellent as this was a site that failed last year and the adults disappeared for a considerable time and have produced at least one young and hopefully more{watch this space}.

We then travelled on and passed a site I was told about by the farmer over a year ago and both of us have watched it on singleton trips out and together and sat in the tree was at last a Little Owl. 

We saw no more Little Owls on the outward trip but we saw some Red Kites near Little Owl Site No.12, got some quick images  and eventually arrived at the Egleton Centre at Rutland Water at approx 16.30 hrs, of course indulging in the usual ice cream, I think we would have done better to have had an ice lolly, as they seem to quench the thirst better.

We set on our way looking for Dragonflies and Damselflies but we saw very few Dragonflies, plenty of Damselflies however. 

We then returned to the car and went hotfoot to the Lyndon Centre as we had read that the Otters were seen at Waderscrape Hide on the Monday evening.

We arrived after the centre had closed for the day but walked down to see if we could be lucky with Otters. Richard went directly to Waderscrape Hide and I went on to Shallow Water hide to get some images of the Ospreys and anything else that was about. The young Osprey are really getting big.  I staid in the hide for about 20 minutes and then headed for Waderscrape and hopefully the Otters, unfortunately it was not to be, we will try again next week.

We then made our way back to the Car and set on our way Owling and got to Site 9 and stopped for half our late tea. We saw a  bird here but we are not sure which Site it was from as it sat perched midway between Sites 9 & 10.
We then headed towards Little Owl Site No. 5  for the rest of our tea before eventually heading for home.

My count for Little Owls today being five adults and one juvenile. Tuesday evenings trip being 4 adult Little Owls and one Barn Owl which I think is a juvenile seen.

Honey Bee Worker, Apis Mellifera.

Image taken as we headed for the Dipping Pond hoping to see some Dragonflies, has got a damaged wing but still flying well and very busy. 

Large Skipper.

Seen near to the entrance track to Mallard Hide.

Brimstone with very Tatty Wings.

Seen on the track between Mallard Hide and  Hide

Emerald Damselfly.

Took both of us a good while to get an image, both of us had a problem getting the cameras to focus and we were also getting stung by the damn nettles. 

Four Spotted Chaser Dragonfly.

Dragonflies appear to be thin on the ground at the moment, whether we are being impatient in thinking they are late but its good to see even the odd ones. 

A Pair of Peacock Caterpillar.

Seen beside the track on the way back from Shallow Water hide.

Male Osprey 33/11 on T post, from Shallow Water Hide.

Got into the hide and a friend was in and told me I had missed 33 returning with a fish minutes previous.

Female & Young on the Nest, Manton Bay.

Young tucking into the fish Dad had delivered.

Juvenile Osprey.

Five weeks old and growing rapidly, I would think they will be ringed this week. 

Red Kite near Little Owl Site No. 12.

Farmer was turning hay in the field and a pair of Kite followed the tractor.

Second Bird.

Very graceful and effortless flight. 

Little Owl Site No. 4.

This image taken on the Tuesday evening when I sneaked and extra visit out on my own. Bird sat in its favourite spot, surveying the world passing by.

Little Owl Site No. 9.

Bird sat on top of the post about 50 metres from the nest tree. This is I'm sure the male. 

Site No. 9.

Female sat just inside the nest cavity, I'm sure we will see young here very soon. 

Little Owl Site No. 1.

This again taken on the Tuesday evening, when Richard is with me the bird goes AWOL. We didn't see the bird on Thursday.

Little Owl Site No. 2.

Bird spotted by Richard and likewise the shot, this is a site that is near to the road and very difficult to get an image from the drivers seat.

First Juvenile 2015, Site No. 2. 

This time a sneeze.

New Little Owl Site No.18.

Thank you to the Farmer who told me about the site over a year ago, but this might be the Summer residence of the birds at Site 6, the barn.

 Little Owl Site No. 5.

This bird started farther up the road on another telegraph pole, suddenly one of the farm cats walked down the road so the Little Owl bombed it all the way down with the cat taking evasive action and obviously bothered by the attention from the owl. Farmers told us this happens on a regular basis,we saw two birds going back to the tree with what appeared to be food so hopefully another site with young to appear soon.

Little Owl Site No.???

Not sure which site this bird was from, it was midway between Sites 9  10, and was continually going down onto the floor and then into the hedge, then up into the tree.

Swallows Flying around area of Little Owl Site Nos. 9 & 10.

Whilst getting the images on Tuesday evening of the Little Owls, I saw a lot of swallows flying low around the field. I foolishly thought it would be an idea to try to get some images. So I turned the ISO up to 3200 and the f stop down to f 14 and had a go. Plenty of shots of the grass and the odd shot of a swallow. Will try again hopefully this week.  

Sky Lark between Little Owl Site Nos. 9 & 12.

In a similar area to the previous images, unfortunately we were more looking into the sun but could not get past the bird to get the sun behind us.

Thank you for your visit, as you can see we had a wonderful and warm afternoon out, hopefully you have enjoyed the visit as well.

Sunday, 21 June 2015


We had our usual day out on Thursday and as it was Richards turn to drive, he arrived at our house for 14.00 hrs and we got on our way. We were not sure as to what we would see either owl or dragonfly wise as it was really windy and after a short time decided it would not be worth our time in visiting the Egleton Centre, dragonflies and damselflies would not be out and about and easy to get still enough for any decent images.

So we visited out Little Owl Sites on the outward journey and saw birds at Little Owl Sites Nos. 2 & 9.

We arrived at Rutland Water Lyndon Centre at about 16.30 hrs and as usual had a chat with Tim who was on duty whilst indulging in our ice cream. We set off on our stroll down to Shallow Water Hide watching out for any birds, damselflies etc on the way down. We met up with another volunteer on the Osprey Project and stopped for a quick exchange and whilst Richard was chatting I spotted a red beetle on a piece of grass bouncing about in the breeze but eventually managed a reasonable image of it. Whilst on the trip out Richard had told me about a visit out he had on Monday and the image he had got of a Cardinal beetle, he said it was really bright red. After he had finished talking to Sheila I asked him what colour was the beetle he had seen, red said Richard, anything like this I asked on the screen on the rear of the camera, where did you get that? on that bit of grass I replied but by then it was bouncing around in the wind. Not far down the track having spotted a damselfly and stopping, I spotted a wild Orchid, such a beautiful flower. 

We saw very few Damselflies and the ones we saw were not being still for any length of time so we kept an eye out for them but went to Shallow Water Hide to have a look for what was about.

On arriving at Shallow Water Hide we had passed John Wright {the field officer on the Osprey Project} who told us that 33 had not long since brought a tench back from Lagoon 1 and both birds were present.

We eventually arrived at the Hide at 17.10 hrs and spent a good three quarters of an hour taking some wonderful sights, with House and Sand Martins, another Mallard with nine young and a Greylag Goose with three young.

We then had a walk through to Waderscrape Hide to see the volunteers on duty, during this section of path we saw a Red Admiral and a Painted Lady Butterflies. After a quick chat we set of for the car park and another owling session plus some well earned tea. On the way back Richard spotted a Black cap feeding young, a great spotting, thanks Richard.

We then visited our Little Owl Site on return and saw birds at Site Nos.9, 12 & 5 so a total for the day of five Little Owls.

On my trip out on Monday evening I saw birds at Site Nos 1, 7 & 14 plus an added bonus of seeing two Barn Owls so a good evening out. This trip was really to stake out our old site at Site No 17 to see if I could locate the birds as I saw a bird at the site last week but could n't locate where it came from.

Rutland Water.

Cardinal Beetle, Track to the Hides.

This beetle sat on a grass seed head and was being buffeted about by the wind and just for a split second was still enough to get this image. They also come with a black head but with a slightly different latin name.

Red Admiral, Track from Shallow Water Hide to Waderscrape Hide.

A lovely Butterfly, this being the first Red Admiral I have seen for a year or two. 

Painted Lady Butterfly, near Waderscrape Hide.

Again a Butterfly I have not seen for a considerable time. 

House Martins, Shallow Water Hide.

Richard spotted the birds arriving and eventually building up courage to collect some mud.

Birds down and collecting mud, then away only to return in a very short time. I would guess they were only flying as far as Manton Village.

Sand Martins, Shallow Water Hide.

This pair sat on the wire fence just long enough to get this image.

Osprey Pair, Shallow Water Hide.

Male on the camera post and the female feeding the young with the Tench John told us about. 

The female then flew to the T post, probably for a rest from the young.

She then went for a quick fly around the bay, here just passing the nest. 

Here on her return passing over the nest .

Here having landed on the camera post overlooking the nest, female on the left. One of the young visible above the side of the nest saying we are still hungry. 

How they are growing, as you can see they have started flapping the wings. 

Mallard with Ducklings, Shallow Water Hide.

Another Mum with nine young. 

Greylag Goose, Shallow Water Hide.

Bird arrived followed by three gosling.

One of the young. 

Family swimming by farther out in the bay.

Swans around the Osprey Nest, Shallow Water Hide.

We seemed to have swans everywhere in the bay.

Common Spotted Orchid, By the access Track.

Gets its name from the oval spots on the leaves, an absolutely beautiful flower. 

A closer image, stunning. 

Juvenile Black Caps, Near Waderscrape Hide.

These spotted by Richard, we took some quick images and left the adults to get on with the feeding

Little Owls.

Little Owl Site No. 4.

This image taken on an extra visit out on Monday 15th June. Still only seeing the one bird.

Little Owl Site No.7.

This image again taken on the Monday night visit, unfortunately the bird would not turn round and also sat virtually for me looking directly into the sun. 

Little Owl Site No. 2.

Bird spotted by Richard, was tucked well away out of the wind you had to time your shot whilst the leaves were not blowing across in front of the bird.

Little Owl Site No. 12.

Bird sat on door on our return journey, this is is our most difficult site as we are not really sure as to the whereabouts of the nest tree and the birds are very nervous even though two footpaths cross very close to them.

Curlew near Little Owl Site No. 9.

Before we drove into the field we saw a pair of Curlew together in the field not far from the Little Owl Site.

Little Owl Site No. 9.

We saw this bird on both the outward and return journey, when we arrived the field gate we normally park in front of,was in fact open, Richard said "shall we" so after a quick journey in the field we got the above image, cars are wonderful hides and the bird seemed more interested than frightened.

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed the blog as much as we did getting 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.
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