This week, I have been photographing Dragonflies

This week, we have experienced 44 degrees centigrade here in the Dordogne. In these temperatures, very little ventures out into the sunlight apart from crazy wildlife photographers and Dragonflies!

Arriving on the scene around 300 million years ago, dragonflies are one of the first insects to inhabit this planet. They've had a long time to perfect the art of flying, hunting and just being amazing.

Dragonflies are to be avoided if you're a gnat, mosquito or other small bug. They don't simply chase down their prey. Instead, they snag them from the air with calculated aerial ambushes. Dragonflies can judge the speed and trajectory of a prey target and adjust their flight to intercept prey. They're so skilled that they have up to a 95 percent success rate when hunting.

There are few species in the animal kingdom that can match the dragonfly for spectacular flying ability. Dragonflies have two sets of wings with muscles in the thorax that can work each wing independently. Thi…

The 'Little Owl' - the smallest of the Owl family

I am fortunate to have a resident family of Little Owls, local to my home. I know which tree they are nesting in, but it is so covered in ivy, that I am unable at the moment to capture them entering, or leaving their nest. They are a fascinating bird about the size of a Blackbird, which makes photographing them at close quarters a challenge, especially, in fading light at the end of the day, which is their favourite time to hunt. However, over the past few days, I have been able to photograph the male whilst hunting. 

The Little Owl is most active at dusk, but also partly active by day, and at night. It often roosts by day in dense foliage or openings of holes. Sometimes perches in exposed sites such as fence posts, telephone poles, bare branches or mounds of earth or rocks. When disturbed at roost, it adopts a slim, upright position, then bobs its body up and down. If still threatened, it will fly away, or withdraw into a nearby hole.

When leaving the perch, the owl drops down and flie…

The wonderful Red Kite - Photographed at 'Gigrin Farm' in mid Wales

The opportunity to photograph any wild creature is a privilege, so when the chance came up to visit 'Gigrin Farm' in Wales and witness the wonder of Red Kites I did not need to think twice. These birds are totally wild and travel up to 50 miles to feed at this site.Having travelled from my home in France, I sadly only had the time to visit on one afternoon. However, using the specially built photography hides during those few hours, I managed to take over a thousand images!
Below you will find just a few of those pictures, along with some information about these beautiful birds of prey.

With a wingspan of over five feet (nearly 2 metres) the Kite is graceful and elegant in flight; its pale grey head and striking almost translucent white underwing patches and black tips on the primaries contrast with warm orange or russet coloured feathers on the body and upper tail which in good light appear to glow. With twisting deeply forked swallow-like tail and long slightly angled wings i…

Rainy day in the garden

It's been a wet week here in the Dordogne, so not much chance to get out with the camera. So today, I braved the elements and decided to shoot some raindrops on the plant life. I rarely photograph flowers, or foilage, but i'm always amazed by how a few drops of rain, visually brings everything to life!
Next week, I will be travelling back to the UK and visiting 'Gigrin Farm' in Wales, to shoot Red Kites. As i'm away, there will not be a blog next weekend, but look out for a review of my journey in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, I hope that you will enjoy these images.

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