Sunday, 27 July 2014

Big Butterfly Count 2014

From the 19th of July to the 10th August is the big butterfly count something i did for the first time last year and have continued this year on my local patch in the meadows. if you'd like to join in here's a link

Small Skipper

I have to say i was never overly interested in lepidoptera before i saw the springwatch special last year and it really spurred me into taking more images of them.

Cinnabar Moths Mating

These day time moths were mating on a stem as i was walking by, theres allot of skill in wildlife photography but theres always that element of luck you have to take advantage off particularly when you see a behaviour rather then just a moth sitting there on its own.

Speckled Wood

As the day got warmer the butterflies got allot more active and harder to get close to so i would differently recommend going early morning for easier shots of the butterflies. This Speckled Wood was very jumpy but by letting it settle i was able to get a shot i was happy with.

Small Blue

This little fellow was what i really wanted a small blue, such a beautiful little insect and again spending allot of time chasing butterflies around a meadow (see i have a softer side). Its the colours on both sides of the wings i like with these insects.

Monday, 21 July 2014

Fairham Fishes

I decided to go down my local patch for a look at some of the smaller fish living in the river which often get over looked by people in favour of the larger ones such as pike or chub. They are a integral part of the ecosystem and feed many species of wildlife such as kingfishers who gladly gulp down thee minnows!

This is a bullhead or millers thumb (so called as its resemblance to a millers thumb) they are bottom dwelling fish looking a bit like a goby. They spend all their lives under rocks and come out at night to feed and can be quite aggressive predators takings anything that fits into its mouth! Despite this they are caring parents and guard the eggs until they hatch.

One of my favourite fish the humble gudgeon, like miniature barbel they filter the riverbed looking for food and like all small fish are a good indicator of clean water. Some fisheries have started stocking gudgeon as they have the habit of feeding on parasites of larger fish like leeches and lice.

It may look like a cross between the previous two fish but the stone loach is a stunning addition to any river system, like the bullhead they often hide in the day under rocks and come out at night. Females can lay up to 10,000 eggs in spring and prefer fast cleaning flowing rivers while its rare cousin the spined loach likes muddier slow flowing rivers.

I did manage to film a slightly bigger fish also while down at the river.

BBC Wildlife Local Patch Reporter
Jack Perks

Facebook: Jack Perks Photography

Friday, 4 July 2014

Puffins Filmed Underwater

Well i certainly live a varied life it was sea lamprey this time last week in Hampshire (see previous blog) and puffins underwater in the Farnes this week! I've been planning this shoot for a while as I'm interested in all things wild not just the scaly variety and rather then getting images and footage of puffins on the Farnes like thousands before me have i wanted to do something a little different.

To do this i went with fellow underwater photographer Rob Cuss and underwater Film Maker Ben Burville and we set out on a ribb to find the best spots to get up close to these amazing birds. The Farnes are about 4 miles of Seahouses and home to a large seabird colony puffins being one of the main attractions to visitors.

I'll freely admit I'm not a confident diver so i was slightly nervous about getting in the water but i soon got into it and saw my first puffin swim by. They are incredibly graceful underwater and inquisitive coming quite close to see what i was rather then catching sandeels though plenty of little pollock soon swam away!

As well as puffins plenty of guillemots were swimming around and it being the Farnes we got some grey seal action in also. Guillemots are also members of the auk family and slightly larger they seemed a bit more bold getting much closer then the puffins.

This seal pup came up to me in less then a metre of water while i snorkeled up to it and kept swimming away and coming back almost playing a game with me.

See the footage below

BBC Wildlife Local Patch Reporter
Jack Perks

Facebook: Jack Perks Photography