Common Kingfisher, Kirkcudbright, South West Scotland


I think the Common kingfisher is just about my favourite bird with its iridescent colours and jaunty behaviour. I have been lucky enough to find a location in southwest Scotland, Scottish Photography Hides run by Alan McFadyen. This is one of the premier places in the country to photograph these splendid little birds at very close range. It’s a great place to visit and get a superb portfolio of images.

Alan has a superb setup that works really well. He has a great insight to what’s wanted by photographers being a photographer himself, giving great opportunities to make the very best images.

Workshops available see details here

See more images on my kingfisher portfolio page


Eurasian Wren, Troglodytes troglodytes


Eurasian Wren Troglodytes troglodytes

One of my woodlannd birds

1440-wren-af2t3537I have been hearing the wren from my woodland bird hide since it was built in the early spring of this year. Just lately I have been seeing them briefly as they forage for food. The main thing that people notice about the wen in the enormous voice it had its song is piercing. The wren is not our smallest bird that distinction goes to the goldcrest with the wren not much bigger.

The wren likes to skulk around in the undergrowth looking for a meal; they feed on insects and spiders and occationally sow themselves for a few seconds.

If you are interested in photographing the woodland birds take a look on this link for details


Sika Deer Cervus nippon


1555-sika-deer-af2t4109The sika deer (Cervus nippon) also known as the spotted deer or the Japanese deer, is a species of deer native to much of East Asia, and introduced to various other parts of the world. Previously found from northern Vietnam in the south to the Russian far east in the north, it is now uncommon in these areas, excluding Japan where the species is overabundant.

They are quite similar to our red deer species and seem to mix in with the red deer herds locally.

Sparrowhawk. South East Scotland


I had an unusual day during the week. I went to Dumfries and Galloway to meet up with old friend Alan McFadyen who runs Scottish Photography Hides and to photograph the amazing Sparrowhawk. They can be difficult at times but the bird had just come out of molting and I was looking forward to seeing it in pristine condition and as you can see, I wasn’t disappointed. The bird is a male you will notice the piercing eye – deep yellow and very large.

I was in the hide for over ten hours before the male Sparrowhawk came along. It stayed for only one minute before it flew away. I managed a few images before its departure but I am quite pleased with the results. I hope you like them also.

Brittish Wildlife Photography Awards

British Wildlife Photographic Awards.

Its been the presentation night at the BWPA in Central London at the Mall Gallery on Monday night. It’s was a great night lots of stunning images on show. I met some old friends and I think made some new ones

I am pleased to say that my image of a Little Grebe entitled “Take Off” was highly commended  by the judges. It was taken at Williestruther Loch near Hawick in the Scottish Borders.




Little Grebe, Williestruther Loch, Hawick

1440 cropped lg AF2T8579I ran up to Williestruther Loch last night, which is to the south west of Hawick in the Scottish Borders. There was a beautiful sunset developing in the early evening. A small community of little grebes live on the loch, these are a favourite of mine and never tire of photographing them. I think they area a striking bird, quite small but with rich colours in their breeding plumage.

Here are a few of the images from my trip.

Woodland Birdhide is now up and running.

720 1440 redpoll BI4X4303It started in March when I got a buider in to look at building a birdhide. We have a good veriety of birds comming out of the woodlands ajacent to my garden, from woodpeckers, lesser, redpols, nuthatch, blue tit, great tit,] and siskins to name a few. The hide has electricity and heating and very soon I will be able to get internet connection in there.

Its great having the facility so close to home, twenty metres away. I find myself going in at 6:00am some morning just as the sun is coming up over the horizon getting some stunning light on the birds

If you would like to come along and and take some pictures take a look at this link



Black Guillemot Oban Scotland

720 1555 bg AF2T5217Whenever I travel to the Isle of Mull I will, if I have time stop in the harbour at Oban on Scotland’s west coast to see the very pretty black guillemot. Oban has to be the best place to see black guillemots. It’s usually just a few minutes for the visit and that has never been long enough to do these little birds justice grabbing a few pictures in the time available. So I decided to make this venue a destination rather than a passing visit to photograph the black guillemots. I spent three days there in some of the finest and hottest weather that Scotland can offer, getting burnt in the process but getting some nice behavioural images as well.

Siskins getting busy.

Siskins – busy collecting food for their young in the nests

After six months of feeding the birds in my garden the birds are now coming in on a regular basis, woodpecker, nuthatch, redpoll, collared dove, chaffinch, dunnock, tree creeper, blue tit great tit, coal tit, long-tailed tit in winter, spotted flycatcher, sparrowhawk. But I think one of my favourites is the beautiful little siskin. They are extrmely busy collecting food for their young.

1440 siskin BI4X1537Siskin – Male

1440 siskin reflection BI4X2201Siskin – female at the reflection pool

Their colours are vibrant, the male has more colour than the female

1440 siskin BI4X1692Siskin – Male

1440 siskin BI4X2133 Male Siskin

1440 siskin BI4X2260Siskin – Male