Wednesday 30 September 2009

Less Time At The Playground

The light starts to go way too early at this time of year.I don't get as much chance to just sit and watch. This is the view from the hills behind my house, somewhere I spend a lot of time and somewhere I miss when I can't get there.

Tuesday 29 September 2009

Slate Grey

Slate Grey, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

The Peregrine is high on my most wanted list. I have several 'ok' shots, but I want the prize. I often see these flying off the cliffs but they are very difficult to catch, they blend very nicely against a background that tends to be the slate grey sea.
A captive bird gives me a chance to get up close, but it is not the same.

Short Eared Owl

Short Eared Owl, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It was a fine evening for a wander tonight. Lots to see and hear, starting with a beautiful Roe deer laying peacefully under the hedges.
At this time of year I am waiting for the Short Eared Owls to arrive. I managed a few shots of them last year, but not many, and they are wonderful birds to watch.
This is one of last years shots and probably my favourite, but for now I will have to keep watching and waiting.

Monday 28 September 2009

If I Were a Mouse...

If I Were a Mouse..., originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

... I would have just polluted my little Mouse trousers. Although I may be a little on the heavy side for a Red Kite to have for lunch, 'the look' is still enough to keep you on your toes...
This is a captive bird.

Seeing Red

Seeing Red, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I would love to say that this was in the wild, but it was at the Devon Bird of Prey Centre. (conveniently, right next door to the beer festival). I wanted a shot of this Red Kite outside, to get the light, but that didn't happen.
I have seen just one Red Kite on the Isle of Purbeck but I haven't managed a shot.
They are stunning birds and have one of the best 'faces' in the business.

Wednesday 23 September 2009

Winter Coat & Woodpecker

Winter Coat & Woodpecker, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

The Roe deer are all looking a bit rough at the moment. They are losing there beautiful summer coats and will soon be a bit duller and a bit warmer.
The Woodpecker popped up just the deer walked past.

Tuesday 22 September 2009

Old Reliable

Old Reliable, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Even on the most gloomy of days one thing you can rely upon is that there will always be a Robin singing his little heart out.


Shadow, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I'm not sure how much Sun we shall see over the next couple of days, the forecast isn't great. This was taken yesterday when the light was better, a female Common Darter I think, catching a few rays.
As usual, if anyone can confirm the I.D. feel free.

Monday 21 September 2009

Little Brown Bird

Another bird that I have needed help with. This was taken near Winfrith in Dorset. I had thought it was a Pipit, but on closer inspection and with the help of a few friends we thought it may be a Bunting. It has now been suggested that this is a female or juvenile Linnet. Thanks everyone, this is why I love the internet, so many people with more of clue than me. Carry on lads and lasses, I am off to photograph deer, at least I know what they are....


Grumpy, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I haven't seen an Adder for a few months and that is quite unusual for me.It was great to spend a bit of time with this young lady but I'm not sure that she felt the same way.

Sunday 20 September 2009

Enter The Wilkeswood

Enter The Wilkeswood, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Atmospheric is probably the best way to describe the Wilkeswood. Almost totally overgrown, the old tracks are not easy to walk along but the scars of the old quarries and the paths that once connected them are still visible if you choose to look. It is a wonderful, eerie place to be.

Saturday 19 September 2009

Rough & Ready

Rough & Ready, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It has been mentioned before that most of my deer shots are of lovely cleen, shiny animals that look as if they have just left the beauty parlour. What was wanted was a dirty, smelly roughed up chap that looked like he needed a good bath. Well, here he is and it will be my last Sika shot for a while too, I promise.

Clouded Yellow

Clouded Yellow, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Another summer migrant, and one that I haven't seen many of. This is a Clouded Yellow butterfly, they are very quick and only sit still when you have lie on a thistle to take the photograph. I am sure I could hear it laughing....


Tourist, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

One of my favourite summer tourists, the Wheatear will not be around for much longer. This is a wonderful little bird and always a real pleasure to see.

Friday 18 September 2009


Autumn, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Summer is well and trully behind us and, although I will miss the light evenings, I just love the Autumn.
An evening wander in to the woods tonight, as it was getting dark, was interesting to say the least. It probably would have been better if I wasn't surrounded by twenty of my sons fellow Scouts out on a field trip. I don't normally go with him and I quite quickly remembered why...

Thursday 17 September 2009


Windswept, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Some of the Sparrows were looking a little worse for wear.


Host, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I don't see many Sparrows so it was nice to see a group of about thirty today.

Wednesday 16 September 2009

First Prize

First Prize, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

To the victor goes the spoils.
This was one of the young ladies that all the fuss was about. Unfortunately she stayed in the gloom, but do I see a bit of a Mona Lisa smile on her face?

After The Rut

After The Rut, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

After every rut there is a winner and a loser. This, I'm afraid, is the loser.
He is about 4 - 5 years old, so has plenty of time to get better. But more importantly, plenty of time to look into the sunset, say "frankly my dear I don't give a damn" and find girl with a smaller boyfriend.

The Rut

The Rut, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

September is usually about the time when the Sika stags start getting a little frisky. They are fully tooled up and spend a fair amount of time showing off. Now is the time for the Rut. Lots of scraping the ground with your hooves and a constant whack and creak from interlocking antlers.
This was taken in the depths of the wood, so the light wasn't great, but it gives an idea of the power of these young males.

Tuesday 15 September 2009

Over The Hill

Over The Hill, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Although the Purbeck Sika population is easier to get close to than our Roe deer, sometimes they just don't play the game. These four does are part of a small group of about twenty that I saw this evening and they had no intentions of hanging about.

Doe Rain Me

Doe Rain Me, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

After a few nice days the rains have come, turning the summer into autumn. This is a Sika doe enjoying the rain probably about as much as I did. Beautiful animals though and with a lovely expressive face.

Monday 14 September 2009

Golden Hour

Golden Hour, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Tonights wander was one of the best I have had for a while and I think this was probably the hightlight. I could barely make out this Fox in amongst thegrass, but once you fix on his eyes there is no turning back.

Just Sit Still

Just Sit Still, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I managed to get out during the fabled 'Golden Hour' tonight. The bright sunset and slate grey clouds worked nicely and the wind was dying down. Now if only these Long Tailed Tits would just sit still for a little while....

Let Sleeping Dragons Lie

Let Sleeping Dragons Lie, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

A rather beautiful Southern Hawker having a sleep this evening. The sun had gone down and I only had my big lens with me so I had to use the flash.

Sunday 13 September 2009

Wild Hunt Bedlam

Wild Hunt Bedlam, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

There are few occasions when it is ok for a grown man to take photos of morris dancers. One of these occasions is during the Swanage Folk Festival.
This is the Wild Hunt Bedlam Morris Dancers and, although they are all as mad as cheese, they do look quite erm.... different.

Saturday 12 September 2009

Cliff Edge

Cliff Edge, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

We have some of the most dramatic coastline on the whole of the south coast and in my opinion, there are few better places to be. The views are stunning and, on a day like today, they literally take your breath away.

Sailing In Mercury

Sailing In Mercury, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Taken from the cliffs at Durlston this morning. I spend plenty of time up here and am never bored. The sun was out and the sky was blue, barely a cloud in the sky. There was a good wind which stirred things up a bit out to sea, keeping the sailor honest.

Friday 11 September 2009


Glorious, originally uploaded by haydnsparkes.

This was taken by a good friend of mine, Haydn Sparkes, during a wander last night.
Haydn takes some cracking shots and, like me, he shows them off on Flickr. To see more of Haydn's work, just click on the picture above.

Hide & Seek

Hide & Seek, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It is not easy taking shots of our smaller birds at the moment. There are still plenty of leaves on the trees and bushes and the little chaps are pretty quick. Another Willow Warbler, I think, but I am not bored with them yet.

Thursday 10 September 2009

One For Sorrow

One For Sorrow, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It was not surprising to see this Magpie all alone, he was making so much noise the rest of his family flew off. I have always liked these birds, even though they have a bit of a dodgy reputation, and there seems to be plenty around this year.

Wednesday 9 September 2009


Warbling, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I could spend far too long watching the smaller birds flit through the hedgerows. Along with a large mob of Long Tailed Tits we had these little fellows, Willow Warblers I think.

Good Morning Robin

Good Morning Robin, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It makes a change for me to have an early morning walk. It was nice to get out again, with the sun shining and no body about. The only problem with an early morning weekday wander is that I have a time limit

Monday 7 September 2009

Corfe Castle Lawnmower

Corfe Castle Lawnmower, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I drive past these sheep twice a day on the way to and from work and have meant to take a shot for quite a while. These are Soay sheep, an ancient breed used to keep the castle grass short and the ghosts of Cromwells army away. They are very cute, but have a bit of an evil look about them.

Sunday 6 September 2009

Incy Wincy

Incy Wincy, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

I tried for the Fox, the Wheatear and the Badger's backside that I saw disappearing into the hedge. I did manage a shot of this, slightly more sedate, Garden Spider though.
My wander this evening was very quite, with only a handfull of people walking the cliff paths. I wanted to try some long exposure night shots but even though the sky was clear, there was too much wind.

Just Another Fun Guy

Just Another Fun Guy, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Wandering through the woodland on a dull and dingy day doesn't give many opportunities for a photo. Luckily, there is always the fungi, it doesn't run off, fly away or face the wrong direction. By the way, there is no colour correction on this one, this is just how we found it.
I maybe wrong, but I think this one is called The Deceiver (Laccaria laccata).

Purbeck Kingfisher

Purbeck Kingfisher, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Not a great shot, but this is the first time I have seen one on the Isle of Purbeck. It is not going to be easy to get closer, this one was on the far bank of Littlesea (so a bit of a tight crop), but now I know they are there we shall have to see if I can do better.

Saturday 5 September 2009

Reed Bunting

Reed Bunting, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

Taken during my wander this morning when I went searching for an Osprey. No luck with the old white fisherman this time, but we had a good walk along the banks of Poole Harbour. The beauty of putting shots on sites like Flickr is that there is always someone who can help you identify difficult birds. This is a young Reed Bunting.

Friday 4 September 2009

Prime Subject

Prime Subject, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It is always a treat to see these. The Purbeck Roe Deer is a little elusive and you have to keep your eyes open. Unlike the Sika, these are very timid and don't tend to hang about.

Red & Blackberries

Red & Blackberries, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It is going to be a good year for berries this year, the hedgerows are almost bursting. Isn't that a sign of a bad winter to come?

In between rain showers, there is still a chance to take a shot. As usual, some subjects are more co-operative than others. The local Sika population can usually be relied upon to pose for a while.

Thursday 3 September 2009

A Walk?

A Walk?, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

A soon as the rain stopped this group of snails came out for there own wander. But whoever decided that the collective noun for a group of Snails should be a 'Walk' needs a bit of a talking too.
A 'rout' or an 'escargatoire' of snails can also been used apparently... just in case you were wondering....

Watching The Weather

Watching The Weather, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

It took a little bit of waiting, but I managed to get out for a wander in between showers. Surprisingly, there was plenty going on. A couple of Roe Deer, two or three Foxes and a few of the usual little brown birds. The only one I managed to catch was this little Dunnock, that was also keeping an eye on the approaching clouds.

Tuesday 1 September 2009

No Darting

No Darting, originally uploaded by julian sawyer.

A Common Darter resting on a twig, one from yesterdays wander. I had another deer shot I wanted to post but thought that maybe two was enough. Still a few Dragons around at the moment, but not for long I suppose.

Quiet but never silent.

I missed the Sun this morning, not because I was late but because the early wander was done and dusted by the time the clouds cleared. When...