Thursday, 29 December 2011

Favourites of the year...

I thought I'd round up this year with some of my favourite photos.

Back in April myself, Ciara Laverty , Rachael Laisney and Steven Williams embarked on a trip to Ardnamurchan, Britain's most Westerly point. Our two week expedition can be re-visited here. Here's a couple of my favourites.

This Pied Wagtail kept me company one afternoon whilst I waited in the hide, for the tide to retreat.

Pied Wagtail

Orange Moon

In May I went on a family holiday to Loch Maree, we stayed in a cottage near Poolewe, on the River Ewe, the Lochs seaward outlet. This was the first time we've stayed here, with only one previous visit to Gairloch when I was a lot younger. It didn't disappoint.

This was our view from the cottage.

River Ewe

River Ewe

Renowned for its Black Throated Divers, I was keen to see them, but never expected one to swim past the cottage.

Black Throated Diver

The nearby Ash, Birch, and Oak woodland held Wood Warbler, Redpoll and this Spotted Flycatcher, who visit the garden almost everyday.

Spotted Flycatcher

June saw me following the local Sparrowhawks. Although I follow this family every year, this was the first time I photographically followed them raising their young.

Sparrowhawk at its nest

Unfortunately this was the last image I took before heading off to the Isle of Mull. I'm hoping to follow the chicks to fledging this coming year.

Sparrowhawk with chicks

But before I did head off, I bumped into this Dipper, the first confirmation of breeding in the Dene for a good few years now.

Young Dipper

And this character in the large meadow at Holywell Pond, in full bloom thanks to the sheep.

Rabbit in the Meadow

On to Mull, with this pair of images, taken on my first day !

Cairns of Coll

Tawny Owl

Two weeks were spent on the Isle, volunteering with Sea Life Surveys and Ewan. A brilliant two weeks on an amazing Isle.


Oh and I made a mate at the chip van.

Herring Gull

The couple of weeks following found me at the RSPB's Loch of Strathbeg as a residential volunteer.

Warm Reflection

August I was back on patch. The subsidence and rainfall allowed for a perfect wader scrape to form, so I spent my time lying down.

Green Sandpiper

Green Sandpiper


Come October I found myself back at the Loch of Strathbeg, volunteering again but this time to produce a promotional film for the RSPB's Goosewatch events. More to come about this in the near future.

Pink-Footed Goose on the Dunes

The Living Mast

Pink-Footed Goose

The year rounded off with me when I visited the Desert Wheatear at Newbiggin.

Desert Wheatear

Wish you all a Happy New Year :)


  1. You seem to have had a good year then!!! Great stuff and I have now fallen in love with the owl.:-)
    All the very best for 2012 and beyond Cain.
    Cheers Brian.

  2. Owl's my favourite, and the geese of course!

  3. What a fantastic year of sightings :)

  4. All the best in the new year and further on Cain. What a cracking selection of images, making it impossible to choose the best. I would love to see Black-throated Diver in summer plumage so that image did strike a chord with me.

  5. Thank you all :)

    All the best for 2012 :)

    Loch Maree is a great place to see summer plumage BTD John, an exceptionally stunning bird.