hit counter

Monday, 19 April 2010

Red Squirrels at Kielder

With the weather being favourable and work very quiet,I threw some camping gear into the car and set forth up to Northumberland,a place I`d hardly ever been to!I`d planned to stop a night at Kielder forest and then check out one or two other places I`d heard about.
I was aware that Kielder held a healthy population of our native Red Squirrel and it was these that drew me to the area.A campsite was discovered and base set up for the night.I checked numerous places in the woods but to no avail,surely they had to be somewhere close by.Most people had had an odd sighting of one or two, but high up in the treetops,not much good for photography.As the night was drawing in I decided to retire back to my humble abode at the campsite and plan an early start next day.
Early mornings for me are without doubt the best part of the day when it comes to being close to nature.Animals and birds are at their most active and vocal as the light begins to appear.I was told about a small area of woodland where there would be a good chance of seeing Red Squirrel, so a flask was hastily made and I was on my way at 6.00am sharp.All was quiet as I arrived, but I just knew something was about to happen!Half an hour went by before the first Squirrel appeared,then another showed only 8 yds in front of me.I`d made the right decision to get up early as I had them to myself.I was quite surprised how quaint they were and I watched them root around in the leaf litter, no doubt looking for their stash of nuts they`d have previously buried.
They were very cautious of me and constantly checked me out,every movement was minimal,as I tried to capture them with the the camera.Even the sound of the shutter aroused suspicion in them.All too soon they were scurrying back up the pine trees for the comfort and security of their dreys.I waited another hour in anticipation of their return but to no avail,however I was more than pleased with my first sightings of Red Squirrel,its just ashame that they are not as widespread as they used to be in the country.I hope you enjoy the shots!!!!!


  1. Fantastic, glad you had a good hour, i've just had an appalling week wandering Kielder. Just goes to show they are there, something I was beginning to doubt.

  2. Paul. Lovely images. You really deserve them for all the hard work and miles you do in pursuing your wildlife subjects.Love the last shot,great catchlight and pose.Well done.