Waiting for Puffins….

People are always asking me for Puffin photos – my collection was meagre so I decided late last year that in 2018 I would make a concerted effort to get some good photos of them. So, after visiting one of the off-shore, uninhabited islands recently I was  able to get some great Puffin shots. I’ve just sent my favourite image of the bunch off to the printers to be made into a square greeting card, hopefully they should arrive here very soon! Puffins are so cute! I took hundreds of shots.

Once I receive the order the cards will be on sale here online and at a variety of retail outlets for £2.50 which includes an envelope.

Hebridean Imaging art and photography outer hebrides Puffin greeting card

Visible migration

Visited both La Janda and Barbate. Probably the only two places still accesible by vehicle after all this rain.

Between the rain showers the migrants must have been pouring across the Straits from Africa. Hundreds of Black Kites and White Storks were seen. There were also plenty of other migrants around – Short-toed Eagles, Booted Eagles and Hoopoes.

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Black Kites - La Janda
Black Kites taking a break from migration, resting up on the electric poles at La Janda
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Hoope - Barbate
Hoopoes seem to be finding plenty of insects anyway.
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Yellow Wagtail - Barbate
Quite a few Yellow Wagtails around at both La Janda and Barbate. This is one of the Iberian sub-species
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Black Kite - La Janda
Black Kite in flight shot

There were also lots of Serins around at La Janda today – some very bright ones in amongst them.

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Serins - La Janda
Looking very colourful!

 

Bluethroats

With all the rain all of the ditches are flooded. Bluethroats, being skulky little devils at the best of times have found a new favourite bush that I can park near, using the car as a mobile bird hide, I staked out the bush for two hours and managed to get some half-decent photos. The three birds (one which had colour rings) were active for all of those two hours – they seemed to be finding plenty to eat. Also present were White Wagtails and a lovely Black Redstart.

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Bluethroat - La Janda
Still skulking…
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Bluethroat - La Janda
Skulking
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Bluethroat - La Janda
Almost got you – just the tip of the tail still hidden…
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Bluethroat - La Janda
Quick – press the shutter, it’s out in the open!!

Plenty of other birds around too

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Black Redstart - La Janda
Black Redstart
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - White Wagtail - La Janda
White Wagtail – there were at least half a dozen of these guys in a small patch of washed up debris, finding plenty of insects.
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Barn Swallow - La Janda
The Barn Swallows were also busy hawking for insects over the floods

Some images of the flooded fields complete this post (the water height at the sluice down the main channel can be see in this week’s Photo Project 365 as I took photos of that on three different days).

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Floods - La Janda
The fields were flooded at La Janda for almost as far as the eye could see…
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Floods - Irrigation - La Janda
I somehow don’t think this irrigation machinery will be needed this week…

People often ask me what bird field guide do I use in Spain, well, I use the same one that I use for the UK, which is, in my opinion the best of all for Europe.


I usually carry the paperback version with me while out and about and have the hardback at home.

I also have this one though these days I pretty much know where to go and I have my own personal favourite spots

My equipment for bird photography: Canon 1DX Mk.II with 600mm lens and Canon 2x Extender

The compact flash card I use is this one, the Sandisk Extreme Pro, and I like it a lot, I have no problems with it buffering

Eyebrowed Thrush photo makes Birdguides weekly review

Just goes to show, it doesn’t matter where you are you should always have your camera handy! The Eyebrowed Thrush – a last minute dash over to Cadiz to twitch this bird after hearing about it during lunch on the 24th February paid off nicely. The fourth record for Spain though two of those had been recorded as dead birds during Song Thrush hunting (yes, I know, I also wonder what the heck is the point of shooting Song thrushes??).

The bird was very confiding and seemingly not put off by the canoodling couple on a bench nearby (who likewise didn’t seemed put off by us birders hanging around with our bins and cameras). As there is a plentiful supply of food in the form of olives on the trees and a nice water fountain the bird might hang around a little longer…

Click here for the full Birdguides weekly review – scroll down there for the write up on the thrush in the Western Palearctic news.

eyebrowed thrush - cadiz - spain - bird photography - rarity - 2018

eyebrowed thrush - cadiz - spain - bird photography - rarity - 2018

eyebrowed thrush - cadiz - spain - bird photography - rarity - 2018

GONHS trip – La Janda

It was great to meet up with old friends (and also to meet some new people!) today at La Janda for the Gibraltar Ornithological and Natural History Society (GONHS) outing. As La Janda has kind of become our local patch while we’ve been here we were asked to lead the convoy, stopping in strategic places where the birds were.

The official report on the days outing can be found on the GONHS website at: www.gonhs.org/news/101-la-janda-outing

Bird of the day for me was the Spanish Imperial Eagle that was sitting on the irrigation equipment – a distant but great view!

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Spanish Imperial Eagle - La Janda
Distant even with my 600mm lens!
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Spoonbills - La Janda
Just love Spoonbills!

Mid afternoon we all headed over to Benalup for a long lunch – one of the best things about birding with the Gibraltarians 🙂

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - GONHS - La Janda
Watching the massive House Sparrow, Spanish Sparrow, Chaffinch, Serin and Brambling flock near Benalup
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - GONHS - La Janda
14 of us in total but plenty of car sharing
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - GONHS - La Janda
Yvonne, Keith and Rob
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - GONHS - La Janda
Benalup in the distance. And Pete taking photos of the photographers…

Arriving and getting settled

Our first full day down south here in Andalusia. Had a ride around at La Janda and then later on at Barbate.

There are still plenty of Cranes at La Janda plus a Black Stork.  I’ll just let the photos tell the story…

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Little Owl - La Janda
Little Owl
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Black Stork - La Janda
Black Stork
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Common Cranes - La Janda
Common Cranes

And at Barbate

Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Bluethroat - Barbate
Audouin’s Gulls – Barbate
Hebridean Imaging - Yvonne Benting - Bird Photography - Spain - Chiffchaff - Barbate
Chiffchaff

People often ask me what bird field guide do I use in Spain, well, I use the same one that I use for the UK, which is, in my opinion the best of all for Europe.


I usually carry the paperback version with me while out and about and have the hardback at home.

I also have this one though these days I pretty much know where to go and I have my own personal favourite spots

My equipment for bird photography: Canon 1DX Mk.II with 600mm lens and Canon 2x Extender

The compact flash card I use is this one, the Sandisk Extreme Pro, and I like it a lot, I have no problems with it buffering

Photo heading up Birdguides Review of the Week

Excellent to have the American Redstart photograph featured in the Birdguides Review of the Week  6th to 12th September 2017.

Local birder Bruce Taylor had found this delightful but rather rare North American migrant in Eoligarry, Barra on the 8th September. The first twitchable American Redstart since 1985 in the UK.

Read the full review at: Birdguides review of the week 6-12 September

american redstart - barra - 2017 - outer hebrides birds - rarities - bird photography