Swedens Crane Migration

The latest offering from Experience Nature wildlife watching tours, is a fabulous short break to Sweden in April 2019. Find out more below.

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The Lake Hornborgan area of Sweden plays host to one of the most incredible bird spectacles to be seen in Europe.

From late March to mid April, thousands of Common Cranes stop here to feed up on there journey to more northerly breeding grounds. The quantity of birds varies from year to year, but we have timed this trip to catch the peak of the birds movement and hope to see between 10 and 20,000 cranes at this time, possibly more. In 2018 the peak count reached upwards of 24,000 birds, plus of course a wide variety of wildfowl that are present at this time. A highlight of this trip will be the sight and sound of thousands of Cranes coming into the lake at dawn, which really has to be experienced.

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Whooper Swans and Goldeneye that stay on to breed in the area are joined by White Fronted & Pink-footed Geese, Wigeon, Pintail, Gadwall, Teal, Shoveler, Pochard and Tufted Duck in large numbers.

Other breeding birds in the area are setting up territory at this time and very evident are the grebes. Great-crested and Little Grebes are present, but in addition Red-necked and Slavonian Grebes breed here and often Black-necked pass through at this time, so it can be a Grebe bonanza.

We also visit other areas locally which are fabulous for birdwatching, sites where we could be lucky enough to see some birds that are either very rare in the UK, or don’t occur at all.

Capercaillie, Black Grouse, Black Woodpecker, Hawfinch and even Eagle Owl and Pygmy Owl.

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Our base for the 3 nights is a converted water mill, where the owner prides himself on offering top quality, locally sourced and organic food and wine. 

This tranquil riverside location has some wonderful local walks to enjoy and we also will have a canoe safari on one evening in search of Beaver which are relatively common in the area. 

This holiday is limited to just 8 people, so early booking is advised. Please follow the link below, or contact me for further information and a full itinerary.

Experience Nature Tours

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NEW – Night Owl Photography Workshops

Starting this October, I’ll be running some new “Night Owl” photography workshops.

Barn Owl

Using an indoor area, I’ll be providing the necessary equipment and knowledge needed for you to take some special images of some of our most loved birds.

All you need to do is bring your DSLR camera and press the button at the right moment, easy …

We will provide a multi flash set up and explain how we can use these to get these atmospheric shots. The workshop will be limited to 6 people, so you’ll have ample opportunity to get the images you are after.

The date of the next workshop is on my website, but if you would like more information, or to book a place, you can just message me.

Book here

 

Fancy a trip to Sri Lanka?

Below is a piece that my wife has written on her trip to Sri Lanka in November 2017. Wendy checked out the itinerary we have in place for November 2018 and will be co-leading the trip with me, along with expert local guides.

Currently we have 6 booked on the trip, which means it’s a certain runner, with a further 6 places remaining.

The trip has something for every nature lover, as the article below will highlight. So take a read and if you’d like to join us, please drop me a line and I’ll send you the full itinerary for the forthcoming trip. Enjoy!

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Devon’s Winter Wildlife Break

Bowling Green

I’ve just returned from a couple of days in Devon, revisiting some of the sites which will be on the itinerary for my Winter Birdwatching Break based from TLH Victoria hotel, Torquay.

The break itself, of 5 nights half board accommodation between February 25th & March 2nd 2018, includes one full day and two half days birdwatching, so leaving plenty of opportunity to take advantage of the hotels many facilities. Transport by coach/minibus is provided throughout.

As you can see from the picture above of the RSPB’s Bowling Green Marsh reserve, I was lucky with the weather for my first full day, visiting here and Dawlish Warren. A slightly colder and duller day followed when I checked out Exminster Marshes and Stover country park, but there were plenty of birds on both days.

I had two very good views of Peregrine Falcon, one at Bowling Green and one at Exminster, they always stir up the rest of the bird life. It’s quite a spectacle to witness as hundreds of waders swirl around on mass, hoping to confuse and evade capture.

Over the two days I clocked up around 80 species with little effort, so we should be in for a fulfilling break come next February.

My stay at the hotel was very comfortable, with friendly staff and great food. The hotel has a fabulous indoor pool, spa, sauna, umpteen games facilities including indoor bowls, 10 pin bowling, snooker, pool, table tennis, even archery on offer. So around the birdwatching, there is plenty to do, including live entertainment most evenings.

I will be providing a bit of the entertainment myself, with two talks across the break, each illustrated with images from my wildlife portfolio. One of which will be giving extra tips on how to identify some of those birds we will be seeing during our stay.

I’m glad to say, places are filling up for the break, so contact the hotel early to guarantee your place. And at just £300 per person, with no single supplement, it might be just the thing kickstart those thoughts of Spring.

Here’s a link to the TLH website to book a place, or do contact me if you need more information. Or call them on 01803 400500

TLH Victoria Hotel.

 

Snow Specialists

My primary objective for my recent trip to Scotland was to get some images of certain species in the snow for my new talk, Wonderful Winter Wildlife.

With just one snowy day luckily falling on a day off, we headed up to Cairngorm in search of Ptarmigan and Snow Bunting.

It was hard work at times, with snow past knee height in parts, but overall I was happy with the collection of images I got. Below are some examples, while others I’ve held back for now for exclusive use in the talk.

If you’d like to book my new talk, or one of my others for your local group or club, please do get in touch.

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Landscapes from the Highlands

I just returned from a week in Scotland where I managed to get some photography in thankfully.

Most of my photography time was spent on birds, but I did get a little landscape photography done in between, so I hope you like my efforts below. I’ll post some birds images soon no doubt.

First up a view of Cairngorm across Loch Morlich

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Next is a nice rainbow over Lochindorb

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Finally a waterfall near Nairn

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The Nuthatch

One of my favourite woodland birds is the Nuthatch. Although I do get one visit the garden now and again, I’m guaranteed good views if I take a walk around my local lakes at Earlswood.

Many walkers take a some seed with them, so the local robins, tits and nuthatches have grown accustomed to an easy meal now and again.

Here are a few shots I managed this morning.