Join the Q: Wildlife Workshop

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Join the Q: Wildlife Workshop

I recently went to a wildlife photography workshop at RSPB Burton Mere. Sessions earlier in the year had been oversubscribed, but the session I attended was the last in the academic year and the weather was not great, so that perhaps explained why there was only one other student apart from me! It didn't matter, though, because it meant that we each got to spend a lot of time with each piece of equipment, and the tutor could answer any questions we had as we went along.

The first part of the day introduced us to the creatures that had been caught in a moth trap - the tutor handled the moths carefully and set them up in a 'studio' for us so we could try out different camera settings without being distracted by the wind and rain outside.

Next was a theory session, where the tutor showed us different types of equipment, and even some lenses that could be attached to a bridge camera1. We also got to explore more of the settings on our own cameras, so I picked up some tips that will be helpful for me next time I go out birdwatching.

After lunch, it was pond dipping time. A Smooth Newt Eft posed for us, so we took some 'underwater' photos of it through the wall of a glass tank, as well as taking photos of some of the insects and other creatures that live in the water.

Buff Tip MothBurnished Brass Moth
Poplar Hawk MothSmooth Newt Eft

Here are a selection of the photos I took during the day - the first is the Buff Tip Moth showing how well it camouflages itself by pretending to be a twig. The second is the Burnished Brass Moth, which is also well named, and well camouflaged against the green-brown log. Third is the Poplar Hawk Moth, and finally the cute Newt Eft looks like some sort of dragon as it flies through its underwater world.

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1I bought a set of those lenses after the session - look out for more of my camera experiments in future!

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