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  • Writer's picturePeter Howarth

Another day in the Woodland

A long time has passed since I was last in the woodland wildlife hide, so when the opportunity to head back for another visit arose, I grabbed it. If you haven’t read my last blog on the hide, go check it out! The hide is amazing, luxury office chairs, tea and coffee provided and gimbals to mount your cameras to, the hide is definitely a comfortable way to get in touch with nature.

My visit to the hide would only be short due to work commitments but in my eyes a short visit is better than no visit. I had been informed the Red Squirrels that the hide is so well known for weren’t visiting as often, due to the large number of hazel trees in seed the surrounding forest. While the Red Squirrels may be one of the highlights of the hide they are certainly not the only one, with Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Jays and Sparrow hawks all being seen regularly.

After a morning of being filmed around the various hides at RSPB Haweswater (a fair trade for an afternoon in the hide), Katt and I were finally let into the hide. As we approached we heard Jays screeching in the tree line and saw Woodpeckers and Nuthatches flying overhead, the alarm call of the several woodland birds also informed us a Sparrow Hawk was possibly in the area.

EOS R6 Sigma 150-600s 1/500 sec at f/8.0, ISO 1000

We got our cameras ready and settled in for a couple hours of bliss. With a near constant flow of small birds coming to the feeders it is often hard to focus on one particular bird. I eventually chose to focus on a young woodpecker who I felt was playing peekaboo with me from behind a log. In amongst its return to the trees to eat a particularly large nut I found myself drawn to the occasional warbler that would pass by the hide. At the time I couldn’t identify the birds but was later told that I had seen both a ChiffChaff and a Willow Warbler, both fantastic little birds and amazing to see up close.

EOS R6 Sigma 150-600s 1/500 sec at f/8.0, ISO 1000

Sadly, as our time in the hide quickly passed and we packed up and headed off home. Another amazing experience and a welcome change from all the macro photography I had been focusing on over summer.

EOS R6 Sigma 150-600s 1/400 sec at f/8.0, ISO 1600

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