This week’s featured print is a shot from February 2018 of a White Stork coming into to attack another already on a nest. It was trying to battle for the rights of this nest, it failed!
For me, it has become an icon of these amazing birds and really shows that they are not always the gentle giants they look. Take a look at the Blog Post from this encounter as it also has many other fighting photographs from this day.
This morning I was shooting some Real Estate photography (see my other venture FotoSul) and decided to make a long morning of photography. I was at Ferragudo before sunrise in the hope that the clouds would clear as promised, they didn’t (A blog coming later on this!) and I even ended up dodging the rain. I still had an hour to waste before meeting my Real Estate Agent client in Praia da Luz so I headed to the wetlands near Alvor in hope of finding a Bluethroat.
During the summer months, they are high up in the northern parts of the world and come south for the winter. In the Algarve, they can be spotted in many of the wetlands on the south coast.
I was driving down the very muddy track to the wetlands when I spotted a Bird of Prey, probably a Marsh Harrier, so I stopped the car and set the camera up. I was shooting in full Manual mode and was ready for an action shot when I noticed a Bluethroat around 20 meters away. Without time to adjust the camera, I quickly grabbed a shot before it flew. I was not expected a great shot, but considering how underexposed the shot is I got bit lucky.
The following day I was contacted by Debby Burton (Alerta Chief!) to tell me that word had filtered down that the Bombeiros who assisted with the carrying of the artwork to and from the stage during the auction wanted the photograph but was out of their budget to bid. Without a thought, I offered a framed print to donate to them to hang on the walls of the Lagoa station.
We have been waiting for the same shift staff to be at the station and this afternoon was the time to turn up with Debby & husband ‘Bertie’ along with Bomberios Chief Gabriel to surprise them with a framed print. I also took along 2 smaller prints from the same day. It was an honour to present these prints to these incredibly hard working people who put their lives at risk to protect the lives of many others!
(If you are wondering who took the first photo, well done to my partner Emma who took charge of the camera!)
Salgados has a large number of Glossy Ibis currently, certainly in the hundreds if not more. However, the majority of them start heading a short distance west to their roosting grounds around an hour before sunset. This daily migration continues until sunset.
Here is one of the last flocks to leave whilst I was there a few days ago. Glossy Ibis in Portugal is a huge success story as they were a very rare bird just over 10 years ago and now the numbers are huge and increasing. More details soon as I will be writing next months article in the Algarve Resident all about these stunning birds. Not sure what they look like? Take a look Here.
I was at Salgados this afternoon taking some shots for my next Algarve Resident Article and got talking to two young lads (great to meet you Bruno and Fabio, keep shooting!) and soon enough the sun was approaching the horizon.
As I was only armed with my 500mm prime lens, I look around for some ideas of a sunset shot.
I got lucky, a group of horse riders climbed on the top of the dunes of Praia Grande de Pêra giving me the perfect silhouette shot against the orange sky. I muttered to myself “…shame there are no clouds, there will be a lot of empty sky…”, then out of nowhere a couple of Glossy Ibis (there are a lot at Salgados right now) not only flew into the frame but also at a reasonable distance to be sharp enough as another silhouette.
A lot of photographers can be lucky and get great shots, but to be double lucky in the same shot it was fantastic! This image is already available to purchase in print in the web shop
For those that Follow Me On Facebook will know that I have continued my Kingfisher Project due to the location of the autumn morning sun lighting a river pool. Whilst walking the dogs, we watched an adult female perched in amazing light on a tree branch, so can’t waste an opportunity like this. I positioned a perch and setup my popup hide yesterday and was at the river this morning. It didn’t quite go as planned as the Kingfisher didn’t use the perch. It seems as now the water level is so low, she prefers to perch higher up to be able to watch a larger area of water. I have now installed a high perch and will return tomorrow morning.
However, all was not lost, I was able to sit and watch this adult female diving and catching fish many times and on one occasion she came up with a Crayfish. I snapped these images. Notice the wet marks on the branch, this is where she was hitting the Crayfish to kill it before eating. I suspect this is “Princessa” that I photographed when she was a juvenile but as I can’t confirm this I am calling this girl Tufty due to her feathers on the back of her head sticking up. Not sure these are permanently like this or just because she was wet.