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  1. S

    Soaring bird of prey UK Southern England

    Thanks, I had thought it looked gull-like. It's just that the gulls around heer are usually in small groups and often noisy and tend to soar in much wider circles. Being that it was in the same thermal as a buzzard probably means that it was climbing quickly to mob it.
  2. S

    Soaring bird of prey UK Southern England

    Soars in tight circles rising to a very high altitude. A buzzard in the same thermal gave indication of being smaller. I think it's a Peregrine. Heavily cropped photos attached. Thanks. Sid
  3. S

    Can this be true?

    There's been no sign of it. Weather has been windy and wet at times but this morning was sunny and frosty so had high hopes but nothing at all.
  4. S

    Can this be true?

    How big's your house!! Not a whisper today (wednesday), Tuesday was a bright frosty morning so perhaps Thursday will be the same.
  5. S

    Can this be true?

    No streams here. Location is north Wiltshire near Swindon, a well known cultural and birding hotspot ;)
  6. S

    Can this be true?

    Definitely not a robin, as one was singing weakly nearby. This bird was singing from in a dense thicket and not on top of the bush as would be expected from a song thrush. No sign of it today but I'll try for a recording if it pipes up again.
  7. S

    Can this be true?

    This morning, around 9am, I'm convinced I heard a nightingale singing, coming from the same thicket I hear them every year in summer. I heard it for around 15 minutes, but failed to visually locate the source. What was so striking was the absence of any other birdsong, which is normal this...
  8. S

    Small quick flying bird

    Thanks for your suggestions. I am sure they were both the same species. Sparrowhawks are quite common round here, this bird was much smaller. What struck me was the explosiveness of the takeoff, and on the second occasion only when I was a couple of feet away. The only similar takeoff I've...
  9. S

    Small quick flying bird

    No photograph I'm afraid, but details are as follows Seen North Wiltshire, UK, second week of October. Sighting 1 Driving along a country lane, bird bursts out from side of road. Didn't see take off, could have been from hedge or ground. Rapid flight in front of vehicle, quick wingbeats, low...
  10. S

    Comment by 'sidwithey' in media 'Hoverfly'

    This photo really shows the beauty of these fascinating little creatures. I'm hoping to get an id guide at Birdfair next week. 'Shows the two little flight stabilizers at the side of the body' Are these located at the juncture of the thorax and abdomen? Sid
  11. S

    hi, 450d lens advice please

    I would suggest you look at Zoombrowser and DPP which is free software supplied with your camera. It's very good and you may well find that Photoshop will not be needed. I only have a very old Elements, which I very rarely use Sid
  12. S

    hi, 450d lens advice please

    The better image sharpness you have, the more cropping you can perform to make the bird larger in the frame. Very few bird photographs you see are completely uncropped. Therefore how steady the camera is held has a major effect on final image quality. IS can be critical in that it may reduce...
  13. S

    And I thought I'd have to travel!

    The last time I saw them they roosted in Westlea near the site of the old police station. I took the photographs from Galton Way which is a dead end next to the railway line. There are also views from the B&Q car park. Sid
  14. S

    Insurance for Kit - Help

    Usually adding an all risks to a house contents policy is the cheapest option. I have always had this in my policy, and to be honest I thought all had it. There is usually an upper item value limit, and there may be an overall amount. All risks means just that, accidental damage, loss, theft...
  15. S

    new to birdwatching needs advice on camera lens

    I would also recommend the 55-250, available new for around £200. Currently it's the only bird/wildlife lens I have. All the wildlife pictures on my site are taken with this lens and the 400D except some of the closeups taken with a Tamron 18-200. It's not partcularly good at focussing in...
  16. S

    hello, amateur seeks advice?? :)

    Westley, I use a Canon 400D and my main telephoto is the 55-250 IS. If you look at my site all the bird photos are taken with this combination (apart from the starling roost taken with a Canon S2), and also the bird and mammal galleries under Botswana. This lens is excellent for the money...
  17. S

    Counting birds in a photograph

    I think I've just found the solution! In DPP (Canon software) there is a 'grid' option that is superimposed on the photograph. Usefully the grid doesn't enlarge when the view is enlarged, so at around 100 or 200% viewing it's pretty simple to take a few repesentative squares and make a fairly...
  18. S

    Counting birds in a photograph

    Yes, I am looking at many thousands, I would just be intrigued to get a rough idea. I wonder if there is a technique used in bird surveys or the like? edit: just noticed your subtitle Fozzybear, the birds in question are starlings! Sid
  19. S

    Counting birds in a photograph

    Does anyone have a simple technique to count birds in an aerial shot? My initial thoughts were using an overlaid grid, but how could this be done? Merging with a photo of some graph paper perhaps? I would need to be viewing at 200% before I could start to separate individual birds. Any...
  20. S

    I am furious!

    Fyi, both the tree surgeon and the neighbour will be legally responsible. A tree surgeon friend of mine was subcontracted by a larger reputable firm to clear some saplings and undergrowth in a wood. Three months later, a knock on the door and a council official with a wad of information on the...
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