Monday, 30 November 2009

Blyth's Reed Warbler

Not what you'd expect to see at the end of November in Shetland: this Blyth's Reed Warbler was still at Quendale today feeding along the lower reaches of the burn with a couple of Chiffchaffs. The bird was exceptionally active and the incredibly strong and contrasty light made capturing detail quite difficult.

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Another White-front & G11 Samples

Bitterly cold north-easterlies this weekend so wildfowl very much on the agenda. This young European White-front at Spiggie was the highlight.

I needed no excuse to put the Canon G11 through its paces. Its certainly a lot more than a point and shoot and the RAW capabilities are good. I messed around with a few landscapes on a very flat day and was amazed by the detail and colour reproduction. Here's one of Loch of Spiggie...

And here's one of a typically contrasty Shetland rank moorland scene...

Friday, 27 November 2009

IPO & The Digital Economy Bill

From the BJP...

The proposed Digital Economy Bill will make changes to the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, which has been debated for the past year by the creative industry and the Intellectual Property Office. The changes, targeting online infringement of copyright "will tackle widespread copyright infringement via a two-stage process. First by making legal action more effective and educating consumers about copyright on-line. Second through reserve powers, if needed, to introduce technical measures, such as disconnection."

However, changes to the copyright licensing scheme could impact photographers the most, as non-commercial consumers could use images without having to ask for permission or providing payment to the photographer.The changes are based on proposals unveiled by the IPO earlier this month.

In effect, the IPO believes that the current copyright system is too complex for users. "Much of this complexity can be addressed by rights holders and how they administer their rights,'" it says. The IPO also considers that "making non-commercial use less onerous for consumers, for example by removing the need to seek permission and make payment for personal use of individual copyright works, would help". However, it adds, fair compensation for rights holders would be required.

One of the IPO's proposals is to make copyright licensing simpler. "Having works or licences available legitimately reduces the incentive to infringe," the IPO says. "However, systems for licensing are complex, time-consuming to access and incomplete. Copyright is automatic and many works (such as photographs) do not incorporate details of their creator or rights holder. As a result, it is hard to get permission to use works. A user may find it impossible to identify the owner of a work. Making licensing easier benefits all who are currently involved and has potential to bring in new users of works as well."

The solution?

Slap an big copyright symbol through your work that appears online, with your name and URL so damn obvious that even a fossil of a judge could bang his gavel in your favour.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

More Beans & a White-front

Finally got some 'keepers' of the Tundra Bean Goose at Rerwick.

This Eurasian White-front was in with the Greylags at Spiggie. Believe me, the light was shocking - you almost have to set your ISO to match your mega pixels some days in Shetland!

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Long-tailed Reflections

After a week of office work it was great to get out - a superb sunny day on Saturday, so headed to the harbours for some more reflection shots of Long-tailed Ducks. Not a bad day on Sunday so re-baited the swelling Snow Bunting flock first thing and moved some rocks in to the site for perches.

On the way back from the Snow Bunts this Grey Heron was an opportunity I could not turn down...

I also spent a fair bit of time trying to get some more usable images of the Rerwick Tundra Bean Goose for a future project. As is typical of flocks of geese at this time of year, they are incredibly timid and do not really allow close approach so here are a few more record shots

Friday, 20 November 2009

Finnaturen suosittelema Kuvaaja!

Finnaturen suosittelema Kuvaaja - HH is Finnature's featured wildlife photographer! Click here to read the full story...

Thursday, 19 November 2009

November Wallpaper

To set the picture as your computer's desktop wallpaper background, double click on the image below to open it in full size then right-click the mouse while it's over the picture. Select the 'Set as Background' menu option, or the 'Set as Wallpaper' option, depending on your browser type.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Beans Mean...

Headaches. Spent the day scanning through the geese flocks in the south Mainland and found two new 'Tundra' Bean Geese - one just a few miles down the road from our house at Rerwick and one at Brake. The Rerwick bird looked very similar in bill detail to the Spiggie bird of last week, but the scapulars and median coverts are strikingly different. I assumed that the Brake bird was going to be the Spiggie bird as it was in the same flock as the neck-collared Greylag but it shows a lot more orange on the bill, approaching a 'Taiga' in pattern - but not in structure. I've sent these pix to Willem to get his views from The Netherlands...

Three record shots of the Rerwick bird:

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Seaduck Season!

Seaduck and scenics - the start the first of the winter guided photography trips. The light was coming and going throughout the day which allowed some really nice opportunities...

Monday, 9 November 2009

Eshaness Landscapes & Snow Bunts

Spent the morning at Eshaness searching for two Tundra Bean Geese which were found yesterday by Mark & Roger T. The birds were very vocal by all accounts, so in the hope of getting some sound recordings, I headed north at first light. A few hours of searching proved fruitless but some amazing light offered spectacular landscape photography opportunities - especially over 'The Drongs':

On the way home I checked one of the sites we are baiting seed to attract Snow Buntings for our winter pho-tours with Shetland Wildlife. After a month of seeding and no birds at all, a superb flock of 50+ birds are now present. If the birds stay, we'll start 'landscaping' in the next few days and get some nice rocks in there for perch shots. Oh, and we'll pray for some snow...

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Swan Lake

Office-based and overloaded with paperwork for most of the week with our brochure dropping, so not a huge amount of time available for photography or sound recording. Maybe not a bad thing as the weather has been pretty grim. Spent most of Saturday trying to photograph Redwings and Fieldfares with mixed success and I finally managed a nice sequence of Whooper Swan recordings, finishing off the week with this EP at dusk today! Enjoy...

Whooper Swans at their best!