Monday, 27 February 2012

A Northern Winter Part One: Red Grouse

Last week i spent 4 days in the Cairngorms National Park area of Scotland with Neil McIntyre of Scottish Wild Images as my guide and with the company of Daniel Trim and Edward Taylor, 2 guys i have spent alot of time in the field with including last years Morocco trip and 2 guys i'd never think twice about being my photography companions!

Day One was spent solo with Neil driving the moorland and shooting from the car window, with the mild weather many of the Red Grouse have already began pairing up for the spring, females sit tight in the heather with their male mates holding territory next to them often seeing off rival males. I have seen Red Grouse before in the Peak District but i simply couldn't believe the sheer numbers of Grouse in one area and how tame they were when the car was pulled alongside them slowly, the only major problem was if the females decided to move the males followed and you were simply left staring at 2 Grouse's arses moving away from you!

The weather was hit n' miss, as we began climbing higher and higher the mist was very apparent and we could hardly see anything but occasionally as we moved to lower ground there was breaks in the clouds and the sun even popped out, it was very tricky for photography in terms of exposure especially as the Grouse have a strange colour to them, they are quite shiny with bright white and red parts to them on an otherwise dark colouring but was enjoyable and to be honest i came away happy with my selection of images including this male with all the characteristics of a 'normal' Red Grouse but with a bright white head, it almost looks like he is trying to using some sort of camouflage in case it snows but the rest of his body has given up on that idea! Enjoy my images...


  1. Great set mate, I'm thinking about getting up there for a few days, looks like you would endorse it?

  2. Definitely endorse it mate! Any info just give me a call!

  3. Beautiful pics. Very interesting to see the leucistic bird!