Monday, 31 August 2015

A Wild success

There is a big smile on my face this week - not just because I made it back home after a long week in Jakarta (although I have to say that I am very pleased about that!), but because a set of my pictures were used as the centre Folio of Wild Magazine.

Wild Magazine is "Australia's Wilderness Adventure Magazine" - and you can find out about it (and even subscribe!) here.

This edition of the magazine focuses on 'wild on the edge' - i.e. finding wildness close to home, and my picture were featured as they were all taken less than an hour from the middle of Melbourne -albeit in the middle of a large bay!

I thought I would just include some picture of the pictures!

You can find more stuff that's been happening around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Wild Bird Wednesday 161 - Kittiwake

A brief post this week due to me being on the road this week.

This weeks WBW birds are again from Bempton Cliffs in East Yorkshire in the UK.  These birds are Kittiwakes - or to give them their world wide common name Black-Legged Kittiwakes.

There formal name is Rissa tridactyla and these birds from the Atlantic are unusual in that they have a very small hind toe, or even no hind toe at all.  This is not the kind of thing you find out everyday!

Anyway, I rather like these fine looking birds, and the places in which they nest and raise chicks are remarkable.

Now it's over to you and your blogs - so click on the link below and off you go.  I'll be in touch when I get back home!  SM

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Brighton 2 - Afloat

I found this sculpture in Brighton - its location is called Doughnut Groyne - and I don't know which came first, the doughnut or the name.

I liked the way I could frame the sculpture and the life-ring and it came as a surprise to me when I found out that the sculpture is actually called Afloat!

Its a nice coincidence.

You can find more shots from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Mr. H

Another week on the road beckons, so I'll organise a few posts to keep things moving along.

Here is Mr. Hudson in classic pose and location - i.e. just about to go to sleep on my bed!  The animal is a complete slacker!

You can find more macro shots at Macro Monday2  and I love macro SM

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Wild Bird Wednesday 160 - Jackdaw

While I was watching the sea birds at Bempton Cliffs I was visited by this rather inquisitive Jackdaw.    I rather like these images - the first has my 'trademark' out of focus vegetation and in the second I really like the position of the flowers and the look in the birds eye.

Jackdaws are the UK's smallest crow - and given that almost all black birds (except the Blackbird!) are called crows by non-birders this is a bird that is often overlooked by the general public.  The birds name is at least in part an onomatopoeic rendering of its classic 'chak - chak' call.   Its formal name Corvus monedula  places it in the same genus as many of the 'classic' crows.

These birds were common near where I lived as a kid - and also seemed to like living on or in the towers of the classically square church towers that are found in Somerset.

These may not be the find of bird that people travel very far to see, but I still think that says more about birders than it does this bird!

Now it's over to you to join in with WBW.  Click the blue button and off you go!  Also, if you happen to be involved in any social media sites - Facebook and the like - why not share this page (and future WBWs) to get more people involved.  Cheers - SM

Tuesday, 18 August 2015


I was in the middle of Melbourne on Sunday afternoon when these to came walking down the street.  I'm glad to know that even Transformers use wheeled shopping trollies and carry large coffee cups.

I will sleep safer in my bed knowing that!

You can find more shots from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Friday, 14 August 2015

Last Light of the Day.

I have been struck by some form of real, rather than computer, virus - so I am not running at full capacity today.

Here is a shot taken at Wilsons Promontory National Park, Australia from early in July.

If looks better bigger!  And it looked even better in real life!

You can see more skies from around the world at Sky Watch Friday.  SM

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Wild Bird Wednesday 159 - Gannet

One of the absolute highlights of the trip to Bempton Cliffs were the Gannets.  Bempton holds the UKs largest mainland breeding colony of these wonderful birds.  They are huge, graceful, comical at times and generally just splendid.

They are know as Northern Gannets or Morus bassanus.  The second part of that name comes from Bass Rock a large breeding colony off the east coast of Scotland.

There were chicks in a few stages of development in the colony, and a number of the adult gannets were being rather bad tempered with the neighbours.  With a body almost 1m long and a wingspan of about 170cm these are big birds by any measure.

One of the viewing platforms gave some opportunity to photograph these birds in flight - which was a real bonus and a bit of a work out for the focus-tracking system of my camera.

I am unsure it I have a photographic 'style' - but I am coming to really like images of birds where there is some aspect of foreground in-between the viewer and the bird.  I imagine it makes the bird look a bit more hidden and remote - and possibly even a little wilder than just a straight 'sat out in the open' sort of shot.  So, there are some images here I really like.

After including all these images, I can only hope that none of you are still on dial up!

And now it's over to you - click the blue button and off you go.  Don't forget to visit as many WBWers as you can!  Cheers SM

Monday, 10 August 2015

Brighton 1

After my time 'up north' I head back 'down south' to the seaside town of Brighton.  I had never been there before - and wondered what it would be like.

These are some of the shots I took on my first walk along the sea front - I leave it to you to work out how I was feeling.

You can find more shots from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Wild Bird Wednesday 158 - Puffin

The Puffin - or Atlanic Puffin or even The Common Puffin - is one of the star birds at Bempton Cliffs.  It is far less numerous on the cliffs than some of the other birds, and they are certainly less abundant that on the Farne Islands.

However, having to scan the cliffs with a little more care than at some locations seemed to make finding one (or even better two!) much more fun.  Good old Fratercula arctica seemed to the bird that most people had come to see on the cliffs, so I will start with this good value bird.

For those of you who have not seen puffins, they are rather short and stout birds, about 30cm high, with rather short looking wings.  In flight they look rather hectic, with very rapid wing beats.  When ever I see them flying (which is not often) I can't held but be reminded of winged footballs!

The first shot here is my favourite, as the stance the bird has taken seems to play into the hands of those of us who would put human thoughts into these comical birds.  It seems to me that the bird is thinking 'its a very long way down!'

There will be lots more bird shots from these cliffs in the weeks to come.

Now its over to you - click the blue button to link up and off you go.  Numbers were back up last week, so maybe a few bird bloggers have returned from their summer migrations!  Cheers SM.

Monday, 3 August 2015

Tractor Lines

While I was wandering about at Bempton Cliffs I noticed this pattern caused by a tractor (or tractors) moving though this crop.  I rather liked the abstract nature of the image.  Many shots of the UK countryside (mine include) can be rather too 'chocolate box' - so I was glad to find an image that will never grace the cover of confectionaries!!

You can find shots from around the world at Our World Tuesday.  SM