Hi and welcome to my Blog, my name is Paul Riddle and I live in south Leicestershire, UK. Back in August 2007 my quest began to locate as many local Little Owl territories as possible. The driving force was a reported decline in the uk numbers so I thought I would do my bit and conduct a study in my area. After 7 years and countless hours out in the field I have detected over 200 different sites. With a thirst for a greater understanding of the owls a more comprehensive monitoring and nest box programme then commenced. This also now includes monitoring the local and very sparse population of Barn Owls, please pop back occasionally and catch up with the life and times of my owls and any other wildlife that I come across. I hope you enjoy your visit!!!

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

A trio of beauties.

Not a good day today to spend time trying to get images, too dam hot, 90+ degrees and humidity to match of 90%. I did venture out at around 8.00pm when things started to cool down but it was still sticky and damp. 

My quarry tonight was the Hummingbirds, I wanted to try and get some "in flight" images. I made a little hide with some mesh I'd bought earlier in the day and settled down near to one of the many nectar feeders. It was a frustrating waiting game at times as they seemed to favour the other feeders over mine! Eventually I did managed some flight images but due to the low light levels and consequence slow shutter speeds they were no good!  However, I did get a couple of "perched" images that I am pretty pleased with, especially when they were shot just as the light was going and the ISO set at 1600! 

Female posing nicely. 

The male Hummingbird only made one visit and although I am happy with the image I wasn't able to crop out the feeder, I would rather not have it in the image as it adds an "artificial" element to the composition, but I suppose beggars can't be choosers!!

The male, a magnifiently coloured individual.

Just as I was packing up for the night I noticed a new bird on the posts behind me, a male Eastern Bluebird, I think? It was my first ever sighting of this species and a gorgous looking bird. I had to make do with a distant image, but tomorrow, weather allowing I am going to set my stall out to get closer and hopefully some better results.

Eastern Bluebird.


  1. I love the first image, Paul!! Good luck with the Eastern Bluebird (I understand that they're not too common)- if they're anything like the Western Bluebird, the one I saw only looked blue if you got the sun on it in the right direction, and then the blue was brilliant. I seem to remember that the blue on the Mountain Bluebirds I saw behaved similarly.

  2. Morning Paul, happy to see you've gotten the blog sorted out! Very nice shot of the Hummingbird, the buffy edges to the head feathers and the stippled throat point to a recently fledged youngster, most likely a young male. These wee ones have just started showing up at my feeders in numbers in the past few weeks. Right on the money with the Bluebird and good luck with the closer shots!

  3. Keep up the good work mate ........cracking shots