Thursday, 19 March 2009

Lathkill Dale

DIPPERS are synonymous with Lathkill Dale, four pairs occupy a two mile stretch of the dale
which is busy with walkers. They are more approachable here than anywhere else I know, I think they have become accustom to humans as they are in constant proximity.
English Nature, the custodian's of the dale, frown upon photographers with long lenses as they reckon, wrongly in my view, that they cause disturbance to nesting Dippers. Yet they ignore families picnicking and playing football, with dogs in tow bounding into the river at close quarters to nest sites.
I think the above image proves my point. This Dipper regularly used this driftwood to perch on. While it was away hunting for food, I hastily set up by the side of the river using the undergrowth as cover. I set the camera up with the hope of getting some of the fast flowing water into the frame then waited for it to return.


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  2. Due to disturbance the Dippers at Lathkill abandoned the nest - one or two photographers is fine but it never stops there.

  3. What all of them, I think not as I monitored them throughout the season, friends of mine have lots of fledgling photographs to prove it.
    I heard a second hand tail of one prominent photographer wading in the water last year and moving stones for perches close to a nest site, that was so wrong and he should be strung up for his actions.
    Two seasons ago ( yes I have been going to Lathkill and Dovedale that long ) I watched in horror as two families picnicked next to the main waterfall site, it was a hot day and they played football in the river, using the rock face where the nest was as a goal. My protestations fell on deaf ears, in fact I got a load of abuse for my trouble.
    Up and down the dale dog on mass running in the water after sticks and balls.
    Anyhow I can't put my arguments to some anonymous person, if your so against photographing birds why the hell are you looking at this blog?

  4. Wouldn't worry about anything English Nature says David. as for 'anonymous' why does he/she have to be that anyway.

    Your image of the Dipper is brilliant and goes without saying you cause much less - if any at all - disturbance to the bird/s in taking it than any families picnicking, playing football, and often accompanied by 'growlers'.

    Keep up the excellent photography and your interest in wildlife.



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