The Elusive Cuckoo

The Cuckoo is a bird that was often heard but rarely seen, nowadays it isn’t heard that often either. As I’ve been roaming about the countryside I feel that I’ve been lucky if I hear one a year these days and until this occasion I had never actually seen one. This particular Cuckoo was photographed…

Sparrowhawk in Bluebells

I spent a couple of afternoons in spring observing and photographing a pair of Sparrowhawks in southern Scotland. The woods were a riot of colour as the spring flowers were in bloom with the bluebells being spectacularly prevalent. The female hawk was particularly compliant and paused on several rocks and trees as it surveyed the…

Arty Mantids

Just a quick post to show some new photos of a couple of my Mantids in a more artistic way than is usual. I decided to venture away from creating shots that look and feel as though they were taken in the wild to something a little more contrived, colourful and maybe, a bit different.…

Peregrine Falcon

A recent shoot of a Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) produced some striking images of this predator as it plucked a victim with feathers strewn around the carcass. The schedule 1 listed bird of prey has been struggling over recent decades due to illegal persecution by some people associated with the game bird industry with number…

Orchid Mantis

This is my Orchid Mantis (Hymenopus coronatus) which is now approximately 4 months old and growing quite nicely. She originates from the tropical forests of Southeast Asia and is one of several species known as ‘flower mantises‘ from their resemblance and behaviour. She is currently fairly white in colour but will start to adopt shades…

Spiny Flower Mantis

I’ve recently gained a couple of Mantids, one of which is the Spiny Flower Mantis (Pseudocreobotra wahlbergii). This is only a 3rd instar nymph at the moment so has some growing to do. It measures approximately 10-12mm in body length and will probably grow to 35-40mm when mature. Today was its’ first photo shoot and…

Giant Asian Mantis

I tried my hand at a bit of macro recently but wanted to shoot something a little bit different. So I attended a ‘North Western Wildlife Workshop‘ held at Appleton’s Exotics in Wigan which was facilitated by Roy Rimmer and Mike Hudson. I had asked before I went if there were any Mantis available to…