In and Around Letcombe Regis – Jan/Feb 2015

If this is the first time you have seen the In and Around Letcombe Regis blog then welcome. I am always out and about with the dogs and mostly have the camera with me and so I decided to document my findings for others to see.

The Winter months are always quieter on the Wildlife front for me. Mainly because the weather is usually bad and I only take the camera out when it is dry.

Birds of Prey

The Red Kites are always about and its nice to catch them soaring around on a nice sunny day.

Summer dogs_0062 Summer dogs_0047

This next image was taken on the foot path by Blandys Farm.

Red KiteThere are also quite a few Buzzards in the area but they are a little quicker off the mark to fly away when they are spotted. Especially as I always have my two dogs with me. This was one I spotted up on the Ridegeway. He wasn’t going to hang around for long once he saw me.

Summer dogs_0063

Kestrels can also been seen hovering above the long grass hunting or sitting in bushes. This one image was taken at Wooley they are hard to get close to so these are usually taken on full zoom on my lens and they cropped in to. This bird was taken at Woolley. I don’t think I have ever walked over here and not seen one or two.

Summer dogs_0048

Short Eared Owls

I got a tip off that some Short Eared Owls had been seen up on the Ridgeway so as you can imagine I couldn’t resist going to have a look for myself. I went up several times. The first time I was very lucky and they were flying up and down the gallops but were quite some distance away.

Short-eared owls are medium sized owls with mottled brown bodies, pale under-wings and yellow eyes. They are commonly seen hunting during the day. In winter, there is an influx of continental birds (from Scandinavia, Russia, Iceland) to northern, eastern, and parts of central southern England, especially around the coast. They are of European conservation concern and so are an Amber List species. Click anywhere on text to be taken to RSPB Website with further information.

Summer dogs_0051I could watch these birds all day. The image above was taken around 3pm in the afternoon as these Owls will hunt during the day.  Disappointed that I did not manage to get very closer shots I went out a few days later and managed to get some lovely images of the birds in flight.Summer dogs_0064

Summer dogs_0056 Summer dogs_0054

They become a little bit of an addiction so I would walk the Ridgeway regularly. Some days they can be seen others not a sign. It’s always nice to be able to capture them in different surrounding and on this particular day I got some of them flying low in over the long grasses.

Summer dogs_0053 Summer dogs_0052My last sighting of them for this winter was on a lovely sunny day.

Summer dogs_0059Summer dogs_0065Local Deer – A slightly nicer winter for our Local Deer, the ground not so went and not too much snow. They were looking really well. Sadly no photos of any wild deer for this period.

Summer dogs_0050Little Egret

It is alway so nice to see the return of this lovely bird to the village and most often spotted by me either at the pond on the farm, the nature reserve or the Cress Beds, this year there were 3 hanging around. They are very shy so stealth mode is always required to get close enough.

Fishing on the Nature Reserve

Summer dogs_0044In flight on the nature reserve, usually because either the dogs or I have been spotted.

Summer dogs_0043Heron

The top image is the Heron making a quick get away and the bottom one was taken on the side of Richmond Lake.Summer dogs_0045Other birds

Jackdaws and Crows, there are certainly a lot of them around the village. These two had found a meal.

Summer dogs_0061Thrush – such a lovely bird but very shy. I often see one on the recreation ground by rarely get close enough to photograph it. This day I was lucky. Such a beautiful bird.Summer dogs_0060Thank you for reading my blog post and I hope you have enjoyed the images.

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Oxford Mail – Thursday

Just round that I got a little mention in the Oxford Mail on Thursday.  For See here.. http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/business/news/11724458.Snapper___s_wildlife_shots_up_for_award/

Snapper’s wildlife shots up for award

A detail from one of Mel Taylor’s photographs

A detail from one of Mel Taylor’s photographs

First published Thursday 15 January 2015 in News

Letcombe Regis photographer and businesswoman Mel Taylor has been shortlisted for a national award for her wildlife shots.

The 50-year-old mother-of-two will find out on Saturday if she has been named Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographer’s Photographer of the Year.

Mrs Taylor, who set up her firm after being made redundant nine years ago, works from a studio at her home in Letcombe Regis and specialises in nature and family portraits.

 

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Nominated for The Societies’ Photographer of the Year 2014

This week I got great news that one of my Nature images, that gained a Gold Award with the Societies in July this year has been shortlisted for The Societies’ Photographer of the Year 2014. The Societies is Europe’s largest all-welcome association for the serious photographer.

I am thrilled to have been shortlisted for the award this year. We are blessed in and around Letcombe Regis to have wonderful  countryside and an abundance of wildlife. My nominated image of the Hare won a Gold Award in the Societies Monthly competition earlier in the year and was taken in Letcombe Regis early one morning in June this year.

I will be competing for the prestigious award of “Nature Photographer of the Year” and The Societies’ “Photographer of the Year,” with the winner being revealed at The Societies’ 2015 Convention Awards Dinner held on 17 January 2015 in London.

Please check out  www.meltaylorphotography.co.uk.