Friday, 25 December 2015


Firstly may I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year. Thank you all who have visited my blog and for all of you that photograph birds, may it be this year you get that perfect shot you have been seeking. 

Richard and myself decided as we had missed going out for a week or two to get out together on Thursday the 17th of December. We decided even though the forecast was not good to head out on our normal route for the Little Owls, have some lunch at one of the sites and then head back towards Cossington Meadows to have some time with the Short Eared Owls. As Richard put it, they may not be about for long so whilst we have some, make the best of them.

Richard arrived at 11.30 hrs and we got on our way with a slight amount of drizzle but the forecasters said it should dry up but stay dull. We arrived at our first Little Owl Site, Site No 2, this being a site we have not seen a bird at since the 29th of June and sat on the side of the tree was a Little Owl, shows it pays to keep visiting the sites, these little birds never fail to surprise you. We carried on round our normal route and saw another bird at Site No. 18, this again a site where we are seeing the bird more regular. We stopped at Site No 9 for lunch and then headed for Cossington Meadows. By the time we arrived it was raining heavily, so we sat in the car for a while, and when it eventually steadied we packed our cameras in waterproof bags and walked down the site to where I have been seeing the birds. Just like us, other fools were in attendance awaiting the birds coming out but it again started to rain heavy so we did a runner {well a fast walk} back to the car and headed for home.

My second visit was on Friday the 18th to Cossington Meadows and again the forecast was for the clouds to clear and we should have some sun and cloud. I left home at about 13.00 hrs arriving at 13.20 and going straight down the site. Several people were already in place but nobody had seen any owls. They eventually showed at 14.20 hrs for about 20 minutes and then disappeared, they could have gone to have a look at the lakes but we saw no more of them, as for the sun and cloud, we only had cloud and very poor light but at last I had a Shortie come a bit closer and sit on a post some 130 metres away, still a long shot but getting better.

My third visit out was on Wednesday 23rd but Richard was going out early and wanted to head for home after lunch. I got away from home at 11.30 hrs and set our normal route in sunny conditions. I only saw a single Little Owl at Site No. 18 and eventually met up with Richard at Site No. 9 where we sat and had lunch together. Richard then headed for home and I headed for Cossington Meadows with the sun still shining. I arrived  at about 14.00 hrs and walked down the site and again no one had seen any owls. I eventually got lower down the site and was greeted by one of our bird club members who was visiting the site for the first time. At about 15.10 the first bird appeared and we had them with us till we walked back to the car and we even saw the birds in the fields near the cars. In future when the birds disappear it might pay to walk around a bit more to see if I can find them instead of waiting to see if they return. 


Little Owl Site No. 2.

This is a bird we have not seen for a long time so a wonderful surprise to see it. The large hole to the side may be the nest hole but when the farmer had put us onto the site, he had seen the birds in a hole of the far side of the tree.

Little Owl Site No.18.

By this time it had started to rain a little and this bird had taken shelter in the hole. Again another site we were put onto by the farmer 


Short Eared Owl, Cossington Meadows.

Yes at last a Shortie a little closer. Checked the distance on Google Earth and this bird was just over 130 metres away, getting better, could try harder and get closer though. 

This particular bird sat on the fence post for a good ten minutes. 

With the bird sitting on the post for so long we only got about ten minutes of it flying {at a very long distance away} before it disappeared not to be seen again.


Little Owl Site No. 18.
Prior to me passing the site, Richard had also seen this particular bird in the same spot. Obviously out of any wind with the sun on it as well.


On arriving no one had seen any owls and we had to wait about an hour before they eventually showed, initially they were on the other side of the track but then they were both showing to both sides, it became a case of chase the owls.

 This bird had obviously got something spotted but did not go down, why do they always do this at such great distances, just come a hundred metres closer and it would be wonderful.

Having taken this image I changed to the other side of the track with Martin only to be told that after I left the Owl flew within about twenty metres following the fence, luck of the draw!!

 Upon changing sides the birds did the normal and were unfortunately a good distance away.

This still a long distance shot.

This bird was virtually on the far side of Swan Meadow.

My Normal Robin Visitor.

As usual the robin visited and enjoyed a Hobnob biscuit, its appears most people are taking images of this bird. Wonder if we could tempt the Shorties to come closer with some biscuits or mice??

As usual, thank you for your visit. If the weather would improve, better images would be possible but the weather is something we have to suffer but luckily something we cannot change.

Please also tolerate the fact of the Short Eared Owls again, they could be gone next week so I'm making the best of them whilst I can. Hope to get a trip into Rutland Water soon.

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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