February 3, 2012
As I arrived at River Caldew, Dalston, Cumbria on a frosty February afternoon; the snowdrops were blossoming and I spotted a bird on the side of the shallow riverbed. Slowy stepping across the stones I approached and identified it as a female Goosander, Mergus merganser. I set up my camera and tripod only a few metres away from the rock which she was perched on and captured some stunning shots of the bird’s behaviour…..
Aiming to take my photography up a notch by capturing more dynamic shots illustrating animal behaviour enhanced by atmoshperic lighting, I waited until the sun escaped from behind sparse clouds before hitting the shutter button. The sunlight illuminated the Goosanders rusty red tuft and silvery feathers as she preened and showed off her pretty plumage.
December 1, 2011
Due to the heavy rain showers and rough wind we have experienced inCumbria lately it has been approx. 10 days since I visited my favourite wildlife photographing location at the River Caldew, Dalston. The Caldew’s waters had risen so considerably that I was unable to take my usual position; rough rapids were now rolling over the riverbed where I would usually rest my tripod. After spotting a pair of Goosander fly by, I slowly scrambled down the sandy bank and set up within millimetres of the rough waters edge. I was able to capture close ups of the female Goosander dipping and diving for food a couple of metres away both on film and stills.
A silhouette of a Grey Heron flow over head into the tree tops on the river banks. Then the familiar chirping of a Dipper calling could be heard as it darted down stream, it landed on the few remaining rocks still visible through the risen water. Another Dipper appeared; they both delved into a shallow rock pool before flying off. A few minutes later a flurry of flapping wings could be seen as four Dippers darted around the river bank. During my stay I frequently heard rustling in the Autumn leaves scattered amongst the drift wood and tree roots around my feet; occasionally sighting a Wren and a Robin.