Thursday, 28 July 2016


We decided as having no Osprey duty this week to have another visit to Ketton Reserve for another afternoon with some Butterflies, Richard arrived at 15.00 hrs and we got on our way and made a direct route straight to Ketton as we intended to go through our Little Owl sites on our return journey. We arrived at approximately 16.20 hrs and commenced our walk about. We decided to take a different route to our last visit but for a start went into the small quarry area where we saw some of the Orchids but these are all over. We then started our new route and very soon were seeing lots of Butterflies but none seemed willing to land, so after some following and slow advancing towards them we eventually managed to get an image of a Green Fritillary, this even though taken at a reasonable distance appeared to disturb the Butterfly, whether this was the noise of the shutter or almost a shock wave of noise, the weather was very humid, and we found for all the time we were on site this happened. Richard managed to see a Lizard sat on the end of a log and called me up to see it, even that disappeared by the time I arrived, it was going to be one of those afternoons. So after an hour or so we decided to give it best and head for Eyebrook Reservoir to look out for the Shortie or an Osprey and most importantly have our tea.

After our teas we got on our way around the Little Owl Sites hoping to see some of birds. We firstly visited Site no 12 and saw a bird firstly sat on the Barn Roof, these birds are extremely nervous even though the nest site is adjacent to two public footpaths, so when we stopped to try for some record shots the bird was away into an adjacent tree but we had at least seen a bird. We then followed on through our sites and at Site 9, the bird appear to have moved some 40 metres down the hill into an old dead tree and Richard spotted two birds going in an out a hole towards the top. One flew down onto a fence post and from the image looks like an advanced juvenile. I had visited the site on the previous Monday evening and could hear two birds calling but never once saw them. These were the only two birds we saw but to be fair it was getting late and the light was going fast.

20th July.

Comma Butterfly .

This was one of the few Butterflies we managed to get reasonably close without it flying away as soon as the shutter fired.

Green Fritillary Butterfly.

Past its best with the wings but the only one I managed to get a little closer to. 

Head shot of the same Butterfly, love the eye.

20th July. 

Banded Demoiselle  Female.

This spotted by Richard sitting on the reed below the bridge at the inflow and was a good 6 metres away so not bad for a record shot.

24th July.

Common Blue Damselfly, Male.

Taken on the walk from the Centre to the Woodland Walk.

Black Tailed Skimmer Dragonfly.

Again on the path walking down the site. 

Ruddy Darter. Woodland Walk. 

Comma Butterfly, Woodland Walk.


Little Owl Site No. 9.
20th July .

This we thought to be an advanced juvenile, we saw two birds in the tree farther down the field than the previous nest tree, the other bird had disappeared into a hole in the tree.

Have had a comment from Paul who says the bird is a adult.

Sitting on a post this time up hill from the previous Nest Tree.
24th July.

This bird is our previous Mr T with the wide stripe on its chest.

Taken Over the Week.

The three all together, least advanced to the right,.
How these birds have really come on during this week.

We've had lots of wing flapping and eventually flying. 

Not all with text book landings.??? 

The bird to the front ducks as the second bird does a far from perfect landing behind it. 

Who moved the roof, another not so good attempt.

Getting better.

Not sure as to what they were after but all three flew onto the ground and completely ignored me snapping away. 

Could not get all three together on the floor but managed these two. 

And managed this one of a perfect take off.

All three of the young are becoming very adapt at flying and are up and down our garden and a little farther at times, but only seem to land on the ground of an evening.

Unknown Wild Flower from three weeks ago Blog.

Thanks to Margaret who has found the flower to be "Viper's Bugloss".

Thank you for your visit, I hope you have enjoyed these images as much as I did in getting them.


  1. WOW, what a post again, John, the spectacular highlight being the fledgling kestrels.
    What a wonder to have the opportunity to observe and photograph them up close like this!
    Your butterfly pics also are fantastic, especially the comas.
    Margaret is spot on about the Viper's Bugloss, a flower attracting many butterflies.
    Warm regards and enjoy your day :)

    1. Hi Noushka, We have had a really wonderful time with the Kestrels, not saying I wouldn't have preferred the Barn Owls, but they have made up for the loss, have only just come in from taking some more images. Glad you liked the Butterflies and also that you agree with Margaret, she will be delighted.
      Have a good rest of the week. Regards John

    2. Thanks for your reply, John :)
      I hope all the kestrels flew off safely!

    3. Hi Noushka, we have still got all three in fact I have only just come in after getting some more images, mind with the light as it is I had to shoot at ISO 6000. Thought your last post was stunning.
      Regards John

    4. Hi Noushka, we have still got all three in fact I have only just come in after getting some more images, mind with the light as it is I had to shoot at ISO 6000. Thought your last post was stunning.
      Regards John

  2. Wow those Kestrel shots on the lawn John are FAB!!!!! May I just add, the suspect "advanced juvenile" Little Owl on the post is in my opinion an adult bird.......

    1. Hi Paul, Glad you like the Kestrel shots, after the disappointment of the Barnies being moved, I have done as you said at Eyebrook and taken the shots and have been able to really observe them closely and really enjoyed this. Have made a note of the Little Owl and added an addendum to my post, thanks Paul.
      Regards John

  3. Those Kestrels, aren't they beautiful. And there was butterflies and dragonflies, perfection John.

    1. Hi Bob, Yes the Kestrels are really beautiful birds and haven't they come on, I have had a wonderful time with them and they seem to accept me being out in the garden with them, I have not been in home long having been out again watching. In the end I had three Kestrels and a Jay feeding.
      All the best to you Bob. John

  4. Fabulous images of the Kestrels, John. My, haven't they come a long way since I last saw them! You wouldn't have been able to take photos like that if they'd been Barn Owls!

    I reckon Paul's right about it being an adult bird - the juvenile(s?) flew into the hole in the tree.

    See you soon - - - Richard

    1. Hi Richard, following your call I finished up with three Kestrels and a Jay in front of me, as you say they have really come on and I most certainly wouldn't get opportunities like this with the Barnies. I have changed the wording on the post ref the Little Owl

      Hopefully see you on Sunday. John

  5. What a difference a week makes in the development of kestrel family. Really super images - able to watch their antics all this in your own garden! Very special even though no barn owls this year. Like the dragon flies especially the black tailed one.
    Glad I got the wild flower right!M.

    1. Hi Margaret, top of the class with the wildflower, as you say it has been entertaining and interesting having the Kestrels in the garden, wish the weather would improve so I could get some decent Dragonflies.
      See you soon. John

  6. A truly delightful series of photos, almost feel I could reach out and touch. I am back from my blog break and catching up ever so slowly :)

    1. Hi Denise, So glad you are back but so sorry to read your news, it's never easy when these things happen. He sounded a delightful gentleman.
      Kindest Regards John

    2. Thank you so much for the kindness of your words. We all miss him terribly but we were very blessed to have him in our lives for so many years. He was 95 years' old. Do appreciate your comments.


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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