Friday, 23 August 2013

River Allen

Hello Everyone,

I know its been ages but here is a little update on one of the projects I have been working on. The river Allen is a stunning chalk stream very close to my home in Dorset. I had never really looked in depth at the wildlife there before, but I wanted to start, and I wanted to get to know this amazing waterway in more detail.

I started by putting a stick across the river and waiting. 

It wasn't long before one of my best friends, mr Kingfisher turned up! I went to the hide every morning and slowly started getting to know the birds a bit better. There were two chicks in the area, however it wasn't long before they were kicked out by the parents. They must have only just fledged the nest when I started at the site, so I only saw them for about 5 days before they were gone. 

The next thing I started working on was the underwater life of the River Allen. The river is full of fish, and heaps of other life. I started by placing a GoPro camera onto a rock and just placing it in the river and hoping for the best. Despite the fact its a very hit and miss process some of the results have been quite interesting. 

Lady of the river - Grayling 


I have got better at learning the preferred habitats of the different species and I know where best to place the camera now to get better results. 


One evening I was filming in the river and something caught my eye flying over the far bank, a Barn Owl!!! I got my stuff and got out of the river and up on to the bridge and watched the owl hunting the meadow on the far side of the bank. Over the next few evenings I spent time waiting and filming the Owl when it made its brief appearances. On one particular evening the conditions where perfect and I was very happy with the results. The image below is only a screen shot from video so not a high res file. 

Barn Owl

I have also filmed Eels is the river Allen. Eels fascinate me as their life history is remarkable. They are born in the Sargasso sea in the Bahamas, then travel across to the UK as tiny 'glass eels'. Once they reach our shores they then travel up our fresh water systems, where they can live in our rivers for up to 20 years! Once they are ready to breed, they TRAVEL BACK TO THE SARGASSO SEA to breed. Its a crazy journey for such a small animal. I felt very privileged to have one in front of my camera.

I have recently uploaded a short film featuring a lot of filming from this project. If you want to have a look, please follow the link bellow. 

"   "

I hope you like the video and images within this post. I will be updating the blog more now as I am working on a number of projects. The main one being camera trap photography. As soon as I start getting results I will let you know!