Wednesday, 29 June 2016


After several wasted trips out, I eventually managed an afternoon out yesterday the 27th of June where the sun was actually shining and we had no rain or misty conditions.

My first trip out was to a small lake I was put on to last year just outside Heather, this was where I saw some Emperor Dragonflies last year but as the weather has been not so good I think I was a bit early for them and only saw Damselflies.

My second trip out was to Rutland Water and the Manton Bay Ospreys, this trip also coincided with a talk we were having in the evening by Alan Poole, an American expert on Ospreys, It was his book that everybody relied on when the Ospreys were first translocated from Scotland to Rutland. We had a wonderful evening with him, he looks after the Ospreys at Martha's Vineyard, an island not far from Long Island and even though he complemented us on our seven nests this year, he somewhat spoilt this by telling us they have over twenty thousand nests, what a brilliant achievement by them as they had a very poor time after the war with the use of DDT and the numbers had depleted badly but with work they are up to the present day numbers. Tim has decided that we have to get fifty nest in Manton Bay to stand any chance of competing with our American cousins.
The weather that afternoon was awful with a mixture of mist and rain and even though I took in excess of  two hundred images I finished with only a handful that were of any use.

I then had a late visit out after tea on Saturday the 25th to Eyebrook Reservoir, on arrival I drove alongside the reservoir towards the dam to turn round and saw an Osprey towards the dam. Having turned round I drove back up to my normal parking spot and pulled onto the grass verge and sat to wait for the bird to follow me up. It was cloudy in the distance but the sun was shining and it was a wonderful evening to be out when my phone rang. It was my wife to tell me it was pouring with rain at home and the drive to the rear of our property was flooding as was the front. After talking to her for about five minutes, the Osprey flew straight over the car about ten metres in the air with a nice trout, would have been a shot of a lifetime but never mind. After that the clouds increased from the North but it never rained and the next Osprey didn't arrive until 20.10 hrs and flew along the far side of the reservoir, so I waited for it to return hopefully on my side but this was wishful thinking on my part as I never saw the bird again before I got on my way home at about 20.40 hrs.

So my best chance of some dragonfly and damselfly images was yesterday afternoon, plenty of damsels but still very few dragonflies, saw some large browns and some hawkers.

21st June.

Azure Damselflies, Male and Female.

I have never seen so many Damselflies anywhere as I did this afternoon, unfortunately I only saw Azures. 

I found several  areas of damselflies like this, this was a shot to the centre but they carried on like this for several feet farther out. 


23rd June.

Male Osprey on the Camera Post with the Female flying from the nest to join him, Shallow Water Hide.

 Female flying round with the young watching her.

Pair of Juvenile Pied Wagtails. Shallow Water Hide.

This pair had a bit of a happening by the fence. 

Male Osprey, Eyebrook Reservoir.

This a very long distance image, about 450 metres.
25th June.

Azure Damselfly, Woodland Walk.

Very common but very colorful.

Common Darter, female, Woodland Walk.

These were around in reasonable numbers but only saw the odd Hawker and Brown. 

Black and Yellow Longhorn.
Rutpala maculate.

Having done a little more investigation I found this on UK Safari.
Can see why its called longhorn.

Saw this on the walk, very colorful and about 12mm long.

Emerald Damselfly, Woodland Walk.

What a stunning creature, not that many about but when found they were invariably hidden behind something. 

Comma Butterfly, Woodland Walk.

First seen this year, hardly been the weather. 

Speckled Wood Butterfly, Woodland Walk.

27th June.

Kestrel Feeding Young In Box.

At the moment the adults are feeding the young just inside the doorway, we have to date seen two young but only briefly. The Barn Owls are still about as we are still finding the odd pellet by the boxes. 

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed the images as much as I did in getting them, even if we have had some awful weather 

Tuesday, 21 June 2016


Sorry for the absence over the last two weeks, the reason as follows. 

Richard and myself were due out on Thursday the 2nd of June but I had to call off due to a poorly dog and spend the day with the dog as not being able to leave her with my wife. On the Friday our dog had the day at the vets so I decided whilst she was in to do some work on previous images. Whilst working on these my image processing programme started crashing so after a chat with Nikon, they said it was a problem with the operating system and said it would be best to upgrade to Windows 10. So I updated to Windows 10 and found that even though the upgrade had worked perfectly, none of my files had come across, everything was missing, pictures, blog the lot, total panic??. After having a word with my computer wizard pal he suggested I went back to Windows 7. After doing this all my files returned thank god and I finished up by taking my computer into an IT specialist recommended by my farmer friends wife on the 6th of June and eventually got the machine back today the 20th so no blog from me and no comments on other blogs. I had a few visits out and managed to get some images between the rain and also had a afternoon on Osprey duty. 

My first visit out was on the 6th of June when I had a quick visit to Rutland Water and the Egleton Centre for a look about for Damsel and Dragonflies and anything else that was present. After a gentle walk around the South side of the Lagoons and seeing many Dragonflies that were unfortunately very active and not landing I set off back for home somewhat frustrated having been told by one of the full time Wardens I should have gone on the woodland walk as he had seen lots of Dragonflies on his visit.

My next visit was on the 9th of June when Richard was unavailable as he was having a few days away with his family to celebrate his birthday, { many happy returns Richard }. This time I visited the Lyndon Centre and the Manton Bay Ospreys. After a steady walk down to Shallow Water Hide and seeing numerous Damselflies I arrived at the Hide and settled myself in with the Ospreys which appeared to be feeling lazy as very little action took place. 

My next visit was on the 16th of June when I had an Osprey duty, this time without Richard who was having a problem with his garage flooding due to the amount of rain we have been having, so I had an afternoon with Sheelagh and the most visitors we have ever had. At one point we had the hide full to overflowing as a bus load of students from Leicester university arrive with Tim leading them, so after about an hour and them leaving we sat back to relax a little and another dozen plus people arrived, this carried on until it was the end of our shift. We had a steady walk back to the Centre looking and some Wild Orchids I had seen on my way down. I then made my way over to Eyebrook Reservoir to see if I could get any images of visiting Ospreys and to have my tea.

My last visit was on the evening of the 17th of June when I decided to have a slow drive around our Little Owl Sites, I only got part way around when as I drove down the road towards Site No 6, I saw a juvenile Barn Owl in a tree by the road. I only managed a very quick image through the windscreen and then drove about half a mile down the road and parked up in a gateway hoping to see the adult flying around looking for food but it must have been going in the other direction, so after about half an hour I moved on to look for other owls but with none seen. I am not sure as to what is going on with the Little Owls but we appear to be loosing sites at an alarming rate, watch this space.

6th June.

Common Blue Damselfly, Dipping Pond. 

Large Red Damselfly, Dipping Pond.

First time having seen this at the Dipping pond area.

Four Spotted Chaser, Near Lagoon 5.

Very striking dragonfly with its golden hue, almost shining like gold.

Common Darter, Near Wet Meadow.

First seen this year,and the only one to date.

9th June.

Broad Bodied Chaser, Near Shallow Water Hide.

First decent image of this dragonfly ever. 

Manton Bay Ospreys, Shallow Water Hide.

Male on the Camera Post, female on the nest with a young bird to her front.

Swallow, Shallow Water Hide.

Pleased with the outcome of this image as the bird was about fourty metres away. 

Great Crested Grebe, Shallow Water Hide. 

Common Tern, Shallow Water Hide. 

Female Osprey, Shallow Water Hide.

She decided to have a fly around the bay and wet her feet.

Common Tern, Shallow Water Hide.

This bird was feeding a ringed juvenile farther  along the fence  but both flew away when I tried for the image of it feeding the young.

16th June. 

Female on the camera post and two of the young visible on the nest. 

Broad Bodied Chaser, Near Waderscrape Hide.

One last week and again this week. 

Large Red Damselfly. 

Common Spotted Orchid.

Not far from the access track to Waderscrape Hide. Gets its name from the dark spots on the leaves. 

Male on the camera post, female landing on the nest. 

From this you can see how the young Ospreys are growing, they have started wing flapping this week and have also started  feeding themselves when allowed by the female. 

Adult Male Tufted Duck.

In the pool to the front of the Hide. 

Juvenile Reed Bunting, ringed.

16th June. 

Just tucking into my sandwich when I heard some Terns calling, looked up and they were chasing this Osprey with a nice Rainbow Trout. 

A single Tern still chasing the Osprey hoping to steal the fish, some hope!!

17th June.
At Last an Image of an Owl.

Juvenile Barn Owl.
Not the best of images as taken through the windscreen, young bird sat waiting to be fed by adult to the front of a nest hole in the tree, I spent a few seconds getting this image then travelled farther down the road so as not to disturb either to juvenile or the adult. I then parked up in a gateway to see if I could see the adults but as I was about half a mile away from the nest they must have been going in the opposite direction.

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed the images as much as I did in getting them. Sorry for the gap in posts and the lack of comments on other posts,

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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