Monday, 22 August 2016

Summers end...

With September approaching and the end of Summer with it I thought it would be time to post some of my summer posts which I've been holding back so I can publish on the bad weather days.
My brother Ryan enjoying the late evening sun by a local river
The moon sinks below the horizon as a thick mist forms
View from my kayak on a summers morning
 Hopefully in the Autumn I can get out more with my camera more than I have this summer. I have not had much motivation to take my camera out with me this year very much as I have chosen more of a enjoy the Nature through my own eyes rather than through a lens.
 
Thanks for reading my blog
Stay wild, be happy and be safe
 
Mike

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Grebes have young but they have...

As most people seem to be out enjoying the summer weather, holidays and Pokemon Go I have decided to publish less blogs until the Nights start to draw in. Most posts will be from the beginning of the summer but today I have decided to write about some strange goings on. 
A few weeks ago after thinking the nesting season was over we noticed the Grebes on the local lake had finally hatched there eggs. The pair had 2 young which rode on there backs for a few days and the pair grew quickly. Everything was fine for about two weeks till a week ago when all 4 disappeared from the lake. We checked the surrounding pools and canal  but they could not be found. While walking and kayaking I spotted a few dead birds floating in the water but it had not occurred to me it could have been the grebes till I noticed they had disappeared. I am not sure if it was a natural predator, human intervention or they left the area but I think they were too young to fly so I'm hoping a natural predator but i. More investigation needed I think and first I'll chat to the locals and keep an eye out while biking, jogging, walking and kayaking. I have a few new camera mounts for filming wildlife over the next year. I have developed one that is perfect for underwater and for when I'm riding my bike as I keep bumping into things without having a camera accessible while out biking. Abit of good news on the 11th August as there is a family matching there numbers abit further up in the canal.
The photograph below is of my first Action camera wrist mount prototype
Thanks for reading my blog
Stay wild, be happy and be safe
 
Mike

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Last week off until Spetember :-(

Unfortunately last week I had my last week off of the summer so I decided to have a few days out walking in the local countryside and a overnight trip camping on the coast. As I had to drop off a plug we accidentally took when we stayed  at a cottage by the sea in early June rather than post we thought we would make it into a couple of days camping to detox from technology except my iPhone of coarse as playing Poke Mon on it made the 5 hr bus journey to the coast and back so much easier.
 We stayed one night camping in the mountains but as I chose cooking kit instead of comfort so we decided to stay one night instead of 2 to but as the weather got cooler I was not to bothered about returning home early. As I had a few days off once I returned home we decided to go out on foot to explore some more of the local villages surrounding my local patch and we found some lovely places we never new existed.
While walking to a place Ive visited before by car we decided  to use Google maps to explore the area on the way a local duck lake. We ended up finding a Nature area by the river Dane close to Holmes chapel which had a pond, woodland, bird hide and plenty of space for Nature. The place is about 30 minutes walk from home so perfect for when I want to enjoy a few hours peace in a place set aside for Nature. As we only passed through the area I did not get chance to explore or take to many photographs except for a few of the lovely nature boards.
One place we visited twice was Shakerley mere where we found a bench by the lake and enjoyed the sun, food and the geese and ducks coming over for food which was very relaxing.
One of the moody looking Geese came over for a photograph
I'll be visiting here over the winter months as there's a lovely bird feeder setup there and I will be taking my camera. Its quite a pleasant walk down some lovely country lanes to get there and at a leisurely pace I can get there in less than an hour. One other place we visited was the River Weaver and we decided to walk from Winsford to Davenam on the edge of Northwich. The walk goes along the river and passes through various habitats. I'll explore the area more over the next year if all goes to plan as I think there is a good chance of seeing Otters there especially in the winter months.
One thing we noticed was Great crested Grebes are doing well along the weaver due to the nests we found being sat on by the adults. We got to see the birds swap over incubation duty's as the rained poured down onto the small ponds along the river weaver.
One Grebe nested on some Lilly pads which is a great idea as they rise with the water
Thanks for reading my blog
Stay wild, be happy and be safe
 
Mike

Friday, 8 July 2016

Bees under the pond

A few weeks ago my brother noticed a few Bees buzzing around the pond so we decided to watch and see where they were going. We discovered they were going under the plastic of the pond and being no danger and knowing bees are in decline we decided on leaving them to go about there beesiness :-p
I'll try to photograph them to see what species they are as they are quite relaxed especially as the colder evening air comes in.
The entrance to the Bee hive under the Pond
Below is a few photographs of the rest of the garden as the trees we planted have really grown quite big this year and as I added some reeds and willow to the pond and an old fish tank its looking rather beautiful. I have no need to go out into the woods some days as we know have a small woodland in the garden. We should get quite a few birds in the winter now we have some proper branches to hang the feeders from.
The trees in the middle of our lawn are getting quite big 2 are Rowen trees and the other is a....
Our Pond from another angle (Red circle is where the Bee hive is located under the logs)

Our little wildlife area by the shed where Foxes, Hedgehogs and the shier birds can relax
Our little Bee hive Pond with our willow tree getting bigger
Hedgehog houses and bird bath reed area
 Anyway I must be off as I'm going for a long bike ride by the river Weaver where there is a Great crested grebe nesting in the perfect spot to get some wonderful photographs without disturbing, if I'm lucky there will be chicks hatching there soon.



Tuesday, 5 July 2016

The death of Flash :-(

Today I thought I would post about one of  my local patches characters and in this instance its Flash one of the local Mute Swans who had a territory here for over 16+ years. We last saw him in February this year when he was fighting with a new pair of swans. On the 11th February my brother separated them and put Flash in a safe place on the river away from the danger of the attacking pair. After that he disappeared and since then we had no clue where he was. Last week we got an email saying he was reported dead at Middlewich on February 14th 2016. He was a wonderful swan sometimes grumpy but yet very calm and intelligent. He will be sadly missed..........
Below is a video I made about the life of Flash
As a wild bird he did his job protecting his mates & cygnets over the years. I shall miss him swimming along side me in my kayak as the sunrises on a warm summer morning along the canal.
I took this photograph in the beginning of 2002 when he had one of his first brood of cygnets
One of his last broods a few years ago..
He was quite a poser
Flash at his main nest site which he held for many years without fail
Flash by the big lock pub
Thanks for reading my blog
Stay wild, be happy and be safe
 
Mike

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Late post from April trip to N.Wales 1 of 2

I totally forgot to post about this a few months ago when I had my first week of the year on the North Wales coast. We had a lovely week at my favorite cottage where we have been going for a few years. The location is perfect as its close to the little Orme with views of the sea and gets the most amazing sunlight first thing in the morning. On one of the days we spent a day walking from Conwy to
Llanfairfechan to see if the local swans had nested on a marine lake but unfortunately they had not started. No Swans nesting on the lake but what we did find were some lovely rivers flowing into the sea perfect for photographing and filming Sea trout later in the year. The bird we ended up finding at the lake was a female Goosander who was quite happy to let us close to get a few photographs. There were a few kids around chasing the ducks so we had to wait till the bird felt comfortable to stay still. If somebody got to close she would jump back on the water for safety.
The female Goosander getting blown around on the windswept lake
 
One female Mallard gets totally mobbed by her suitors
As the sun went down it cast a stunning golden light over the lake reflecting from the sea onto the area
Thanks for reading my blog
Stay wild, be happy and be safe
 
Mike

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Things people Do for a selfie #idiots

In April we watched a group of 4 people disturb 40+ Seals beaching on Angel bay at the Little Orme, Llandudno just for a few Seal selfies. This got me thinking if they had published the photographs online.  I ended up finding the photographs on the #littleorme on Twitter and Instagram. I searched for the photographs so I could try to find out why they would do such a thing as I cant understand why anyone would. We took a few photographs from above Angel  bay as they pushed closer to the Seals which got forced into the water just so these idiots could get a selfie.
Off back up the cliff after disturbing the Atlantic Grey seals from there safe haven!!!

 I looked on Instagram and below is what I found...
 It angers me what people will do for a photo especially when there is a sign stating to not disturb the Seals when there on the beach. Here's a few links to there accounts
and when they got closer the seals went and did not return all day!!. I thought I would ask them on Twitter why they thought it was worth it. I got no reply from RM or SB which I think means they don't care about disturbing animals or are they ashamed of what they did and had no idea they would be caught out.
In the first photograph you can clearly see seals in the background and in the last photo all the Seals are in the sea meaning they disturbed the Seals just to get some photographs which in my eyes and a few others is selfish and disrespectful.
 Here's a close up of the Seals in the background of the photographs
And when they pushed to close the Seals were disturbed!!!!
One Seal out of 40 remains on the beach hidden behind a rock
.PLEASE DON'T DISTURB WILDLIFE JUST FOR A PHOTOGRAPH ITS NOT WORTH IT.
.IT MAY NOT SEEM LIKE NOTHING TO YOU BUT IT CAN HAVE BAD EFFECTS ON NATURE.
THE ATLANTIC GREY SEALS ARE RELEASED HERE FOR A REASON TO KEEP THEM SAFE AND UNDISTURBED SO PLEASE DON'T DISTURB THE SEALS AT ANGEL BAY, LITTLE ORME LLANDUDNO.

Thanks for reading my blog
Stay wild, be happy and be safe
 
Mike