Outer Hebrides: Arrival

 

Due to the lack of Internet on Uist I am finally positing my daily Hebridean blog; something that may defeat the point now but I hope you enjoy my journey as much as I did, stay tuned.
I have been extremely lucky this past year for where I have been and the things I have seen so the opportunity of working with fellow enthusiasts was an opportunity I could not let go. Discover the wild is about photographing exactly that; the wild, the combined efforts of David Winnard; a nature enthusiast and Andrew Parkinson a renowned wildlife photographer you are taken on a journey of education capturing wildlife in a ethical way with the use of foraging skills whilst learning about new species and the best way to photograph them. Discover the Wild provides a variety of tours and one to ones but the bird photography trip to the Outer Hebrides really caught my attention. With the chance of seeing if not capturing a variety of birds including the Short-eared owl, Lapwing, Ringed Plover, Dunlin and many more there is the rare and elusive Snowy owl which I am determined to see. The hebrides; over fifty inhabited islands scattered across the crystal blue sea are flourishing with wildlife due to the remoteness and underpopulation, whilst life here is tough and self reliant it is known as one of the most beautiful places on earth. Starting my journey ridiculously early I set off to Exeter airport with one of my best friends and fellow photographers; Holly Nicholson with expectations to arrive in Benbecula at 1pm. Holly and I decided to take part on this trip with Discover the wild together to expand our portfolio, our fieldcraft knowledge and escape the daily grind of work and studying, a week away to delve into the last UK wilderness with our cameras in hand with the hope to awe the natural beauty and the species that we discover there. With Dave and Andy as our guides we were joined by fellow photographers Matt and Graham, setting off the evening of our arrival in two groups we scanned the landscape, witnessing a variety of birds but only managed some basic shots of Red Deer Cervus elapses; Britian’s largest land mammal. As this years rut is over many have lost they antlers but few remain, mainly on juvenile males which still remain in a velvety state. Once we returned to camp Dave received note of the only Snowy owl in the UK here on our doorstep! Unfortunately I was too exhausted to go out so had an early night for our 5am start in the morning. As described this isolated and treeless island is stunning and wild, with a variety of birds calling and flying overhead a mix of the stunning beauty, exhaustion, and excitement left me in awe for the next day.

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http://www.discoverthewild.co.uk/Discover/Outer_Hebrides.html

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