Sunday, 4 July 2010

Allerthorpe Common

Allerthorpe Common is a small Yorkshire Wildlife Trust nature reserve near to Pocklington in East Yorkshire. I haven't been there for a couple of years and a warm and sunny day was forecast so I decided to book a day off work.

The main reason for my visit was to try to get some pictures of the numerous Dragonflies which can be seen around the main pond. It was a warm, sunny day so they should be quite active. I wanted to have a go with my new macro lens which I've had for months now but haven't used yet.

The reserve is a good half-mile from the nearest car park but the stroll through the forest is nice and easy.

I came across this Carrion Crow. Its not often I attempt to get shots of these birds as they usually fly off but this one was quite happy on his tree-top perch.

I wasn't expecting a wave though...!

On to the reserve and I soon found out that the focal length (105mm) of my macro lens required me to get much closer than the Dragonflies would allow. They kept taking flight so I put an extension tube on my 300mm and used that instead.

I think this is a Four Spotted Chaser?


I soon got bored with the insects and decided to move on and try for some bird shots. There were several Green Woodpeckers around but as usual they refused to pose for photographs.

I set up by a small pond, under a bit of cover and this Willow Warbler(?) came quite close after a while. Nothing much else of note came near but I enjoyed watching the Blue and Coal Tits bathing in the cool water. Unfortunatley they were out of range for decent shots.

I uploaded this young Grey Heron shot by mistake so I might as well include it. It was taken from the hide at Bretton Lakes a couple of weeks ago.


  1. Four Spotted Chaser - Yes :)

    As for the Willow Warbler, they still stump me and it's not until they open their beaks that I can tell them from a Chiff-chaff! Haha.

  2. The blue damselfly is a Common Blue. The Red one is a Large Red. Nice photo's. I take my insect photo's using a 300mm lens too :-)

  3. Thanks for pointing that our, Warren.

  4. That first shot of the Carrion Crow is really quite magnificent! I photographed so many Ravens in Virginia last month and just could not expose them well! Easier said than done! Love that warbler shot and the young heron has so much detail - wow! You must have been close...

  5. Nice sharp images of the Chaser and Damsels using the macro lens. FAB.

  6. Haven't been to Allerthorpe for ages, might have give it a go again. All those dragonfly species are at Bretton right now too plus Black-tailed Skimmers.