Monday, 21 August 2017


Firstly an apology to all my friends in Bloggerland, I have been somewhat slow in commenting on Blogs but with being out making the best of the Barn Owls most evenings {even in the rain of which we have had plenty } my time has been very limited on the blog.

I had a visit to Rutland Water on Saturday the 12th of August going on a direct route through to Egleton as I had not got a great amount of time, so I missed the Little Owl Sites that Richard had visited on the Thursday.

On arrival I parked in amongst all the marquees that were all ready in place for Birdfair, I booked in at the centre and headed for the Lagoons to see what was about. It was really a very disappointing visit and very little was seen at a reasonable distance, two Marsh Harriers were spotted by some others on Lagoon 4 but even for me they were a silly distance away. 

So after this I decided to have a visit to Eyebrook Reservoir for a look for any Ospreys and Red Kites, saw the Ospreys but no Red Kites.  


Shelduck In Eclipse Plumage. Lagoon 3, Shoveler Hide.

 This pair were in the pool to the front of the hide.

Mute Swan Cygnets.

These four were on the first island out from the hide and mum was close by. 

Great Crested Grebe, Lagoon 4, Sandpiper Hide.

This bird suddenly appeared from the reeds and dived and came back to the surface with a fish. 

Egyptian Goose, Osprey Nest, Lagoon 4. Sandpiper hide.

When I first arrived in the hide, two of the birds sat on the nest, one then flew up onto the T post. This is the nest where these birds destroyed the only egg laid in the nest last year.


I arrived at the reservoir at 16.40 hrs and it was not long before I saw my first Osprey. By the end of my session I had seen three Juveniles and two Adult birds. Its a lovely place to visit and you can at times get much closer to the Ospreys than is possible at Rutland. 

Adult Male Osprey.

This bird flew down the far side of the reservoir and carried on down towards the dam. 

Juvenile Osprey.

This bird was again on the far side of the reservoir this time flying back from the dam. 

Same bird just a little bit closer. 

Again the same juvenile but not possible to see the ring. 

Still no ring visible. 

A quick turn but I still cannot see or read the ring number. 

Adult Osprey.

This bird returning with a very small fish, someones going hungry this evening. 

Adult Osprey.

This bird made a sudden appearance, hovered on the far side of the reservoir.

And then headed down the reservoir towards the dam. 

Female Juvenile Osprey, 3 AF, A Bird Fledged At Site O.

At last a bird came a little closer and it was possible to almost read the ring number. I made the bird to be 3 AT but I sent the image to Kayleigh at the Lyndon Centre who got John Wright the Field Officer to have a look and he told me it was 3 AF.  

She circled down the middle of the reservoir and eventually headed farther down. 

She eventually finished up fishing to the front of some trees about half a mile away where she caught a small fish. I only can confirm this as I had a gent with me with his scope and he watched her dive and catch the fish, and I saw her fly away with it. I have never seen a juvenile catch a fish before. 

You cannot but admire the beauty of these birds.

13 th August.

I got away from home at 14.10 hrs and headed for our Little Owl sites, I just wanted to see a bird, it is a while that I have been Little Owl less.

I arrived and followed my normal route and eventually at Site 9 I saw a Little Owls, what a relief. mind it was so buried in the tree I was unable to get an image but at least I had seen a bird.

Then on my return journey I saw a bird sat on the barn roof at site No. 11, it was virtually dark by then so I didn't even attempt an image.

On arrival at Waderscrape Hide, I found it to be bulging at the seams with visitors, most of whom were on site for Birdfair at Egleton and were staying locally, luckily later on things got considerably steadier with visits.

Adult Female, Shallow Water Hide.

Virtually a carbon copy of two weeks previous with the female on the T post, juvenile male on the nest and no sign of the adult male 33/11. 

Juvenile Male 2 AM.

He had moved from the nest up onto the camera post and was having a quick preen.

Female Osprey Chasing and Egyptian Goose.

She is still very protective of her youngster and gave a real chase to this unsuspecting goose that just happened to fly by. 

Juvenile Osprey 2 AM.

Had a quick fly and thought about having a chase with the female after the goose, but then why bother.  

Common Tern, Shallow Water Hide.

Numerous of these birds still about and could not resist this image. 

Mallard Duck, Shallow Water Hide.

A long distance image, they look so dowdy this time of the year. 

Juvenile Little Egret, Waderscrape Hide.

This is I'm sure the same bird as last time I was on duty but this time it only was with us for a short time. 

Then someone came into the hide and that was it. 

Left to Right, Great White Egret, Cormorant, Great White, Heron and Little Egret.

Unfortunately this is the closest the Great Whites came to us, this was a 530 metre shot.


We still have all three young with us but they are still not coming out of the box any earlier. I have been out with these birds most evenings either in the hide or in the car on evenings when its been raining, and I've had several evenings in the car, the weather has been awful.

Please remember all these images are taken at high ISO numbers, up to 28200.

Just about to go out with the birds and hope they will appear earlier.

Female Juvenile Barn Owl.

First to appear from the box. 

Second Juvenile Female.

Second female appeared in the front and flew away {plus I was slow in pushing the remote button} but then returned and sat on the left of the box for me. 

Then up into a tree at the back of our land, so it was a case of moving about in the hide, swinging the camera round on the tripod, falling out of my seat and being amazed she was still  sitting in the tree still with all the noise I made {and must admit to a bit of cursing}. At least I managed an image away from the box. It was getting really dark  and I had great difficulty in finding this bird.

Male Juvenile Barn Owl. 

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

Tuesday, 8 August 2017


Time flies by and I am on another Osprey duty with my new partner in crime, Phil  for another duty, but this time with the depleted Manton Bay Ospreys. The Female Juvenile 2 AN has gone missing, she in fact went missing on Saturday the 29th of July and was last seen on the nest at 05.18 hrs and has not been since. Has she had a disaster or has she gone on an early migration. She had been seen a couple of days earlier flying and spiraling higher  above the nest site which is very often a sign of a pending migration but this time she returned to the nest. So I think we have to wait for at least two years to see if she ever returns. 

We had a fruitful but reasonably peaceful afternoon and evening with very little going on at the nest, the adult female spent most of her time on the T post and the Juvenile Male mostly on the nest with very little seen of 33 who appeared to spend the bulk of his time in the Poplars close to the nest and was very difficult to see even with the scopes.  We had only one intruder that appeared to be a non-ringed bird and only put up the gulls, the Ospreys had no interest in the bird at all.

Female Osprey. Waderscrape Hide.

This is where she sat for most of the time we were on duty, she just had one small fly around the bay. 

Juvenile Male Osprey.

He spent all the afternoon sitting on the nest, with no sister to chase about he appeared to be very quiet. 

Intruder Osprey.

This bird appeared early evening and flew through the bay. I can see no ring so is this another Juvenile from elsewhere getting underway on migration. We had an E Mail this week saying that several of the non breeding birds and first time returners have already headed South.

Common Tern, Shallow Water Hide.

Several of these birds were flying around the Hide and landing on the fence.

Juvenile Little Egret.

This bird spent most of the time we were on duty in the water to the front of the hide. 

Doing the little dance. 

Little Egret Adult.

Then this adult would appear and the Juvenile would leave but return again after a short time.

Water Rail.

These birds have been around the hide for several weeks but the first time I have managed to get an image. They are so very nervous and kept hiding in the reeds only to appear for a few seconds and when appearing they were always on the move and my can they move when they want to. 

Water Rail, Juvenile.

We had two juveniles but only managed to get an image of one, they were even more adept at hiding than the adult and when appearing it was usually at speed. 


This bird landed in a tree outside the hide and I could not resist getting an image.


They all appear to be coming on very well and are still not appearing that early in the evening much to my disgust having to work at such high ISO numbers and with the f stop at 6.3 , I am always fighting to get light but I am going out early this evening hoping for a change in behaviour.

I am making the best of them at the moment as I have the feeling they won't be with us that much longer.

Male Juvenile Barn Owl.

First bird to appear at about 21.15 hrs and flew straight away.

Female Juvenile Barn Owl.

Second bird to appear at about 21.17 hrs and also flew immediately away.

Female Juvenile Barn Owl
This is the second female and she was also quick away, time about 21 35 hrs. 

The Three all Together.

I was having difficulty in actually seeing the birds in the view finder as it was 21.50 hrs and this is at ISO 12800. 

One then flew down to the right of the box and landed on a gate post. ISO 28200. 

Another evening, one of the females having a wing stretch prior to flying.

Juvenile Male.

Having a quick shake prior to flying away.


An attempt at a flight image, at such high ISO numbers its impossible, its also very difficult to actually see the birds in the view finder hence the near loss of the Owl, lets hope they come out earlier one evening. It is not that easy getting decent images of Barn Owls even when they are in your garden. 

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

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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