A long-overdue return to Neil McIntryre’s stunning red squirrel hide in the Cairngorms.
My first visit to Eskrigg Nature Reserve, near Lockerbie in Dumfries and Galloway – a fantastic location for red squirrels.
What a year! I’ve already written about the first 6 months, so I won’t repeat myself, but it’s fair to say that from a photographic/wildlife watching perspective 2017 has been brilliant. From the bucket list I’ve now landed on the Bass Rock amongst the gannets and photographed fishing ospreys – both unforgettable experiences. I’ve learnt a lot: photographic techniques, field craft and wildlife behaviours. My ambition for 2017 was to focus entirely (okay… so I did venture South of the border to the Farne Islands), on Scottish wildlife, learning as much as I could about a small number of locations and the animals living there. Personally I don’t want to be the kind of photographer who just ticks species off, I want to get to know them intimately and in doing so take better images that capture the essence of the animal I’m photographing. On top of all this I just love being out sharing airspace with these amazing creatures, it’s a real honour. If anything my love of wildlife, Scotland, the outdoors and photography has increased during 2017.
A day spent in Alan McFadyen’s Scottish Photography sparrowhawk hide in the company of sparrowhawks, jays, red squirrels, brambling and great spotted woodpeckers.
When it comes to red squirrels, achieving decent photographs without the liberal use of hazelnuts isn’t easy. I’ve tried a few times up in the Queen Elizabeth Forest near Aberfoyle, but have had limited results, so I decided to book a session in Neil McIntyre’s hide on the Rothiemurchas Estate.
My aspiration when it comes to wildlife photography is to stick to a few species and spend as much time as is possible watching them – not only is this a joy to do but hopefully it will lead to more interesting images.
Little did I know as I trudged up a mountain path in the Scottish Highlands last July that I’d be meeting an animal that I would fall in love with.
This post isn’t exactly about photography, but it is connected. As someone with a strong interest and love of nature