I’m not one for stakeouts really.  There’s a certain perception of nature photographers that they all sit for days on end in a hide waiting for the perfect shot – I’m afraid they don’t.  There are undoubtably a few who do, and more power to their elbow, but most will do as I do and do some research.  It makes all the difference and means you can fit your photography into a busy life.


Dipper in Stonehaven


So if I’m planning a trip somewhere I will check out what I’m likely to see and where.  When it comes to my local patch, I just pay attention.  One photo that I’d been meaning to get for a while was a decent shot of a Dipper; that charismatic wee river bird that bobs constantly near fast-flowing water.  I’d seen them a few times on local rivers but they were in tricky spots near busy dog walking routes, meaning a high chance of failure due to noise or animals scaring off the bird.  Despite not doing stakeouts there is some sitting around when doing nature photography.

Recently we found a new route though which took us along a different bank of a local river – a much quieter bank.  It had a resident Dipper.  So I noted the spot and made a point of returning with camera in hand later in the week.  The Dipper was still there and even better, this is where it’s nest is!  Realising that the bird would be coming back for most of the day I settled down to watch and enjoy this wee stoater of a bird.  They really are very special.




As an added bonus there was a brilliant wee Wren flitting through the trees who stopped just across from me for a song.


Wren in the woods