Thursday, 22 November 2018


I decided to have a visit to Rutland Water and to meet up with a friend, he had phoned to say he was coming so we arranged to meet at the Egleton Reserve and have a walk about.
On arrival we found the reservoir had really fallen in level, this never helps as it just drives all the birds farther away. 
Water was being pumped into lagoon four which is something they do every Winter, as this reaches a set level in the lagoon, it over flows into lagoon three which will be very useful but what we really need is some heavy rain to bring the river in flood.
Rutland water has the level maintained with water from the River Nene that is a few miles away. 
This water is pumped by three very large pumps in a pumping station at Wansford and after a short length of pumping main the water then gravitates down a large tunnel and into the reservoir. These pumps can only be used when the river is in flood, it was the same last year and the reservoir was virtually full by the Spring.
We had our walk about and saw not very much we could get images from as the birds were mostly at long distance away but we had a good walk, chat and saw plenty of birds.
We also had a walk around to Old Hall to see a Red Necked Grebe but this was as silly distance away so no images. It was only after we had walked that we realised how far it was and then we had to walk back to the car park.

Great White Egret, Lagoon 3, Shoveler Hide.

Luckily this bird came to us. The area where it is about to land is normally under about 600 mm of water. A bird feeder has been erected in the the front of the hide to attract the Bearded Tits, these had apparently visited in the morning but nothing was around whilst we were in the hide.

Lapwing, Lagoon 4, Sandpiper Hide.

Large numbers of these birds were about and were up and down all the while.
Earlier a Peregrine Falcon had been on the Osprey nest and had taken a Lapwing, but whilst we were in the hide it was absent.


I decided to have a visit as a Short Eared Owl was being seen on a regular basis so I got on my way and arrived for about 13.00 hrs.

I waited in the upper bunker hide with another gent until just after 15.30 hrs when this bird suddenly appeared from within the Marsh grass about 20 metres to the front of us, we were at the time in deep conversation and even though I saw this bird emerge, we were both caught off guard and neither managed any images even though it flew over us I would say only 6 metres above us, it was a case of language John!!!!!
Other than this very little was seen, some Golden Plover were out on the mud some distance away. 

Red Legged Partridge, Near the Upper Bunker Hide.

I had seen many of these birds on the road near to Eyebrook but this bird was a solitary walking around near to the hide, not far from where the Short Eared Owl appeared {about five metres closer}, why didn't it come out whilst I was getting these images.

Golden Plover, Upper Bunker Hide.

Eyebrook Reservoir is also becoming low in water level and these birds sat on the mud 250 metres from the hide.

Greylag Geese, Lower Bunker Hide.

After a trip around the neighboring area looking for any Red K
ites about, I called in at the lower hide and saw these geese .


I decided to have a visit to Longmoor Reserve for an hour or two with a couple of Short Eared Owls that have been about for over a week, I was going to visit earlier in the week but finished up instead out on the tractor trying to pick up all the leaves scattered over the land.

I arrived at about 14.00 hrs with the hope these birds would appear at a reasonable time as the birds did at Cossington Meadows two years ago, unfortunately this was not to be, likewise they remained a considerable distance away not helped by idiots standing to the front of the hide. They eventually appeared at 15.45  hrs hence the orange colouration on some of the images from the sun as it was going down 

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 This bird had been flying towards us in the hide but then turned around and flew away.

 Then a quick left hand turn only then to fly over some trees on the far boundary and disappear.

This is the second bird, this was flying over a plantation area to the left of the hide and considerably higher than the first bird. 

This bird was not as close to the tree as it appears but was a silly distance shot.

My last image, this bird can be seen carrying a mouse. 
 I'm sorry about the poor quality of the images but I was shooting over silly distances. LROS have been reporting these birds but have stopped doing so due to people abusing the the privilege of seeing these beautiful birds. You cannot set yourself up in the middle of an open area where the birds will fly and expect these birds not to see you. Also to stand in the front of the hide is not fair to the people in the hide, this was happening whilst I was on site and we still had plenty of room in the hide.

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


  1. Hi John
    Fantastic photos, I love the Great White Egret, another I didn't photography. Beautiful all of them.

    1. Hi Bob,
      We at the moment have large numbers of GWE at Rutland, this happens most years then in the Spring the go!!.
      Hopefully they will stay and breed soon.
      All the best and thanks for the visit, John

  2. Hi John,
    Nice outing in the middle of the birds.
    The egret has good positions.
    The encounters with partridges and owls are wonderful. I've never seen either one of them.
    Have a good week-end and happy birding :)

  3. Hi Nathalie,
    Hopefully you will soon see some Short Eared Owls, they in the good conditions are superb to photo. I hope to see some more soon and hopefully without disturbance.
    The GWE are with us in reasonable numbers.
    You have a good weekend and good birding likewise.
    All the best, John

  4. Hi John,
    You must have been thrilled to photograph this Short-eared owl! And the partridge is beautiful.
    I see the Golden plovers remain at quite a distance too where you are, I never managed to take decent pics of the species!
    Well done,
    All the best for the coming week

  5. Hi Noushka,
    And welcome back on line.
    I was very happy to see the Short eared owls but some of the other watchers certainly spoiled it for everyone.
    The Red Legged partridge are such a pretty bird but the Golden plovers are always a problem, they are always in the middle of the reservoir and with the water levels getting so low it makes it worse. Maybe one day both of us will get a decent image of them.
    All the best to you and have a good week. John

  6. Wonderful images. Didn’t realise Red Leg Partridge was so pretty! And great shots of Short Eared Owl. You managed some unusual angles which is very appealing! Like the Egret and lapwing. M

  7. Hi Margaret,
    Pleased you enjoyed the images, I knew you would like the Lapwing, they are really building in numbers.
    Red Legged partridge are a very pretty bird, shame where I saw them as they are escapees from a shooting estate, lets hope they stay put and then will be safe.
    The Short Eared owls were very long shots, I keep hoping to see some elsewhere and closer.
    All the best and see you soon, John

  8. Hi John...beautiful series of pics. Congrats

    1. Hi Ana,
      Thank you but could have been better with the Short Eared owls without the idiot factor.
      All the best, John

  9. Hi John, a nice selection here again, beautifully taken. I am always in awe, so sharp and clear!

  10. Hi Denise,
    Glad you enjoyed the birds and thank you for the compliment.
    All the best, John

  11. Como siempre unas fotos espectaculares, me han gustado mucho sobre todo las del Asio flammeus en vuelo, son fantásticas. Llevo casi dos meses sin poder publicar y sin visitar los blogs que sigo, así que me voy a quedar un rato en el tuyo para ponerme al día. Un fuerte abrazo desde España, todo lo mejor amigo!!!

    1. Hola German,
      Gracias por la visita y disculpa por tu ausencia.
      Ultimamente he tenido algunas de las visitas mas agradables.
      Los buhos de orejas cortas eran como siempre publicacion.
      Todo lo mejor y un abrazo desde Inglaterra.
      Tu amigo, John

  12. Hi John,
    it is great as you have been able to photograph the great egret :-)
    And I'm a bit jealous of your red legged partridge !!!!
    Very nice to see this and to be able to photograph :-))))))
    Large groups of golden plovers. Here you can also see these golden plovers and also in large groups. The gray geese are here with me regular guests :-)

    Great to see the little owl fly. Coincidentally I have seen them and this is in my new post (but that will take a while.) I have to read everything first ;-)
    Great fun and valuable item.

    Kind regards, Helma

  13. Hi Helma,
    I always enjoy seeing Egrets be it the Great or Little.
    Red Legged partridge are such a pretty bird, and such a wonderful subject to photograph.
    With your Golden plover do they come closer to you, at the moment in England I am only seeing them at silly distanced,
    It was as always wonderful to see the owl in flight, just wish it would have come closer.
    Look forward to your next post.
    All the best, John

    1. Hi John,
      I have decided to place some vogyels first and the owls then I do. His long-eared owls, and a short-eared owl. Meanwhile I also have a bosuil :-)

      Kind regards, Helma

    2. Hi Helma,
      Look forward to seeing this,I have never got an image of a Long Eared owl so cannot wait to see yours.
      All the best, John

    3. Hi John,
      The blog is ready in concept.
      After the Christmas greetings and wishes, I put them on the blog.
      I have no email from you otherwise I had already shown you something ;-)

      Greetings, Helma

    4. Hi Helma,
      I wait in anticipation for after the Christmas period.
      My email address is


  14. Wonderful notice the recovering of the Red Kite... Happy week.. :-)

  15. Hi Ana,
    We are very lucky with the Red Kite, they have really recovered in numbers but do still appear very nervous if you try to get a closer image.
    Its a great shame other species are not so fortunate.
    You have a good week, all the best, John

  16. Oh John,
    What a wonderful series of photos!
    You certainly got the best of what you observed.
    I really enjoyed this festival!!
    All the best and enjoy your weekend :)

  17. Hi Noushka,
    We have had such varied weather lately, it has been very difficult to get out without getting the kit soaked.
    Lets hope we can have some brighter days and can get out and about with the birds.
    You have a good weekend, Jjohn

  18. Good morning John: First of all let me say that your new header is stunning. Lots of birds covered here and a pleasant walk with your friend no doubt enhanced the whole experience. Great Egret is becoming “just another bird” for you! Surely in all the world, Lapwing must be one of the most stunning of all shorebirds. It truly is fabulous!

  19. Hi Both,
    The header was a lucky shot from a hide, these birds had just flown in and landed on the reeds.
    We both had a wonderful afternoon walk, a chat and some birds, what more can you ask for plus we had good weather, unfortunately this has been in short supply since.
    The GWE is as you say a bird we are seeing in reasonable numbers, but they always disappear in the Spring, it would be so good if they would breed at Rutland.
    I can never resist an image of the Lapwing, we have them in very large numbers all over the reservoir, they are such beauties.
    All the best, John

  20. wonderful capture of flying white egret.
    have a great day

  21. Hi Tanza,
    Thank you for the visit, we have Great White Egrets in reasonable numbers at the moment at Rutland Water.
    All the best to you, John


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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