Monday, 30 August 2021


It was obvious on my trip to Eyebrook Reservoir on the 12 th of August that some birds had gone, no signs of any Common  Terns all but one,  the gent who rings the young Terns  said they had gone much earlier than usual, no Swallows  and for the first time in a while no Osprey to be seen. Do birds have  a sixth sense that tells them its time to go, in a week you will have a head wind or a storm over the Sahara. Where as we with our millions of pounds of satellites and computers have great difficulty in saying what the weather will do tomorrow  let alone in a week with any accuracy.

I have only had two outing since my last post but have spent several evenings attempting to get some decent

 images of the Barn Owl,. the bird does not appear until virtually dark as it seems he may be getting some hassle from a pair of Tawny Owls, I have heard them calling on several evenings when in my hide, so this gives a reason for his speed in leaving the box and  lateness.

So on with my attempts  below with the Owl, all  having to be taken at ISO 125600.

This time he almost stopped  but still blurred.

I had difficulty in seeing the bird it was so dark.

He appears and is gone, I just haven't got any time.

Slight improvement.

Please remember these are all at ISO 125600/

Again it was virtually dark, difficult to see the bird.


My last Common Tern of the Year. But this bird disappeared  mid afternoon.

On my trip out I again saw the Peacocks and found it difficult not to take some images.

EEyebrook Rervoir 26th of August.

Then some House Martins appeared for a short time , but these then went away.

They were harder to get a decent image from than the previous few weeks ago  Swallow

Where the Common Terns had nested, now the domain of Cormorants.

Lesser  Black - backed Gull.

Denoted by the white feathers on the back of the wing.

Then a farmer on the far side of the water arrived with his Combine and started harvesting a field, so round to the other side I went and asked if I could drive up the track  as several Red Kites arrived very quickly and were following the Combine,  I was told to help my self but keep on the track and away from the working area.

They really are such wonderful birds to  photograph and watch as they picked up any prey.

Then for a short time they were joined by a Kestrel.

It has been so good for me to get out twice plus the Barn Owl evenings, I hope you all enjoy my efforts. I should manage to get out this Thursday but the week after  I have to return to hospital for the stone that caused the Sepsis to be surgically removed, after this the knee can be replaced and I can start to get out farther afield and walk.


  1. Fabulous John, and I do love the Peacocks, they are beautiful.

    1. Hello Bob,
      I am hoping to get one of the males displaying , but not so far, they are very beautiful birds but also very noisy.
      Best Wishes.

  2. Stone removed. knee replaced? You will be a whole new man, John! Make sure they give you a first class warranty on the knee, covering parts, labour and longevity! I am not familiar with the interaction between Tawny Owls and Barn Owls, but I would imagine that the Tawny Owls would be a bit of a threat to the Barn Owls. Having said that, may they leave each other alone, and both have a great breeding season. All the best, David

    1. Hello Both,
      I will be becoming Bionic, I have got a full service for 5 years and a 5 year warranty on the knee, The stone however is a real worry, it could mean another dose of Sepsis if not removed soon.
      the Tawnies are a real threat to the Barn Owls but he is safe in the box, hence the reason for him not coming out until late, he is a=safe in the dark and the Tawnies are long gone
      Best wishes

  3. Los cárabos siempre intentan conquistar las cuevas de las lechuzas, son tan territoriales. Precioso reportaje, las fotos de las lechuzas aunque las has realizado con mucho ISO se ven muy bien y son muy descriptivas. Enhorabuena John, un fuerte abrazo desde el norte de España.

  4. Hello German,
    I am hopeful that all will be peaceful with the Owls, he is safe in the box and the Tawnies won't venture into the box, I have had to be shooting at very high ISO that really doesn't help.
    Thank you and a big hug from Central Britain.
    Best wishes ,

  5. Hello John
    The darkness is really a shame, these great birds in light that would be the top shots, but also that way you can see that beautiful birds are, compliments for your work
    Greetings Frank

  6. Hello Frank,
    This year with the Barn Owls has been a real disappointment, what with only a single male that only appears when its almost dark. even with my kit I'm having to shoot at ISO 125600 after previous year it's such a shame.
    Best wishes,

  7. Hello John,
    It is difficult shooting in that light. I get movement all the time and as I have said before I discard many of my photo's. I try to encourage the foxes into the best lit part of the garden but it is still needs a lot of luck. Keep practising.

  8. Hello Mike,
    Yes we both suffer with the same problem, that being darkness, you with your foxes, me with the Barn Owls,, unfortunately the boxes are in a dark section of our land and it would be classed as a disturbance to the birds to have a light, I have a section 1 license from the BTO so I can observe and monitor and when we have young ring them but that's the limit,
    best wishes,

  9. It’s interesting about the birds John. I’m sure they do have a sixth sense about these things, and I believe other animals are the same in sensing what is coming. I also found it interesting you mentioned about the storm over the Sahara. A blogging friend just said in one of her recent posts that they are dealing with sand from the Sahara, and she lives on the gulf in Texas. Enjoyed seeing your Barn Owl in motion and still, and in lower light. Enjoyed the Tern. Migration has started? I sometimes forget it’s that time of the year again. Lovely to see the House Martin’s in flight, as was your Red Kite, such a beautiful bird. Peacocks have always fascinated me since I was a little girl. All birds really, a love that was passed down to me by my father and his mother before him. Sorry to hear about the stone and having to have your knee replacement. I hope it won’t be too much longer before you can get out and about and further afield. I think that is in my future too, the knee replacement that is. I am showing signs as I can’t walk as far as I used too, but wonderful photos such as yours keep me going :) I seem to be on a bit of a ramble so I will stop before this turns into a novel ;) Thank you John, enjoy the rest of your weekend and the week ahead.

  10. Hi Denise,
    Sorry in the late reply but I am only just home from hospital and yes the dreaded stone is no more, Mother Nature is such a wonderful thing in the way she works, if we could find out how she worked. It has benn a disapointing year with the Barn Owls, but not many people can say the have them so close to home. I always enjoy seeing the house Martins, but tht'st it for anoother year, the Red kites are such a beautiful bird to watch, I think like you my interest was passed down from my dear old Dad. It will be good to get my new knee, this one is very painful these days, sorry to see you also require the replacement as well.
    Bless you Denise enjoyed the novel, you have a good rest of the week,
    Best wishes,

    1. Good news to hear you are back home, that's very true about Mother Nature. How fortunate we are that these interests were passed down by our fathers :) I hope next year the sightings of Barn Owls will be plentiful. I haven't seen an owl for a few years. I know they are around but I don't have the expertise I suppose, and they are excellent at camouflage. I probably have walked by them and not noticed, and I am always looking :) You enjoy the rest of the week also. Good health and very best wishes!

  11. Hi John!!!...I adore the Barn owl with a heart face ... Very good catches of Red Kite and Kestrel ... Well done ... Have a good week

  12. Hello Ana,
    We are so lucky in having the Barn Owl so close to home, if he would appear a little earlier it would be a great help in getting some better wuality images. Red Kite are so beautiful to watch in flight.
    You have agoppd week ahead, Best wishes.

  13. Hi John,
    If you have to take pictures with that high ISO then that's just not possible! There are proof pictures that you see the barn owls and that is a good sign, but taking pictures of them is difficult now. I'm glad they're here :-))))

    Beautiful portraits of the peacock and their shades of blue is one of my favorite colors. House martins, gulls and cormorants. There are plenty of these too....
    The pictures of the red kite are really beautiful again. to get jealous again.....

    Greetings and stay safe,

  14. Hello Helma,
    I'm afraid it has been so disapointing with the Barn Owls this year, but trying to get decent uimages when it's virtually dark is as you say just proof that the bird is in the box. I pass the Peacock every time I go birding and it is difficult to pass without stopping to get an image or two. Glad you like the Rd Kites, I'm surprised you do't have them in your locality,
    You stay safe,
    Best wishes,


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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