Another poor boar picture


Another poor boar picture, originally uploaded by Ben909.

And the badly taken boar photos continue... This time, my own fault for having all the wrong settings on the camera. The mixture of ever decreasing light, adrenaline and not knowing quite where the subject matter will appear is a combination I haven't got used to yet. With the sightings continuing as they are though, surely a half decent photo will come soon.
Location withheld.

Reflective pond 2


Reflective pond, originally uploaded by Ben909.

This pond can be found somewhere between Brierley and Cinderford.

Reflective pond


Reflective pond, originally uploaded by Ben909.

This pond can be found somewhere between Brierley and Cinderford.

Worst.Ever.Photo (again)


Worst.Ever.Photo (again), originally uploaded by Ben909.

This picture upload serves as nothing but a reminder for me of what was an incredibly rare and special encounter with a white deer in the Forest of Dean. After a very successful evening watching boar (no photos unfortunately), we came accross a deer stood in the path on the way back to the car. We stood and watched it for 30 seconds or so, when it stepped out of sight, only for a pure white deer to step in to its place. It was only young, and looked very similar in size to the one in this article (although that is in Devon, but it does illustrate how lucky we were to see this). The light was very bad, and taking a photo was an afterthought. Completely forgot about the long exposure time and ended up with this blurred mess. As I said, not a photo, but a personal reminder of a special evening :)

Location (very much) withheld.

Worst.Photo.Ever


Worst.Photo.Ever, originally uploaded by Ben909.

OK this needs explanation, because even by my standards, this is a terrible photo. I very regularly go out attempting to photograph the wild boar of the Dean. I've had maybe 10 or 11 sightings. They're notoriously hard to see, and even harder to photograph. Last night I had my camera trained on a spot where I hoped the boar would emerge from the thick trees. Instead, a huge boar managed to silently appear right behind me. The foliage was so thick that he was within touching distance by the time either he or I realised each other were there! I nearly had a heart attack and stood up and backed off, but this boar - unlike any previous encounters - did not bolt for the trees... instead he followed me, keeping just a few feet away. It was very hard to gauge what he was thinking, so I wasn't about to switch from the telephoto lens to get a photo. Eventually I managed to get a distance between us and got this photo - my only excuse is that my heart was pounding and I was unable to hold the camera steady. This was an unforgettable meeting, but not one that I hope to repeat at quite such a close range :)  One day, I'll get the photo I've been after....
Location withheld.

Plump Hill sky


Plump Hill sky, originally uploaded by Ben909.
The sky didn't look quite as evil as this when I took the photo, but I thought this was a bit more interesting.

Plump Hill


Plump Hill, originally uploaded by Ben909.

Lydney harbour


Lydney harbour, originally uploaded by Ben909.

I've gone way over the top with the HDR processing, but the original picture was so dull and grey. The sky is huge here so I'll be returning for some sunset or storm pictures soon :)

Lydney harbour


Lydney harbour, originally uploaded by Ben909.

Just a small section of the shore at Lydney Harbour.

Purple Skies


Purple Skies, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

The final picture from the Symonds Yat Rock set. Had a bit of fun playing with the sky here. It's a great view that doesn't need modifying, but couldn't resist this, and I think it kind of works. April 2009

Symonds Yat Rock panoramic


Symonds Yat, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

This was done from a few stitched together photos from Symonds Yat Rock. The original is about 12000 pixels wide, but following this link will just take you to a reduced version of 1500 pixels. April 2009

Symonds Yat


Symonds Yat, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

And another view from Symonds Yat Rock (only a couple more to go!). April 2009

Symonds Yat Rock


Symonds Yat, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Another section of the view up on Symonds Yat Rock. April 2009

Symonds Yat


Symonds Yat, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Part of the panoramic view from Symonds Yat. Either side of me are a load of bird-watchers waiting for glimpses of the resident Peregrine Falcons who nest on the cliff-side. April 2009

River Wye


Symonds Yat, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken downriver from Symonds Yat. April 2009

Symonds Yat


Symonds Yat, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken downriver from Symmonds Yat. Very nearly got a wet camera doing this picture! April 2009

The Saracen's Head


The Saracen's Head, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken while waiting for the ferry to take us to the pub :) April 2009

Saracen's Head Ferry


Saracen's Head Ferry, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken after having crossed the Wye on this ferry, following a walk from the Saracen's Head, down the river to Biblins Bridge, and back up the other side of the river. April 2009

Goodrich Castle


Goodrich Castle, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

This is from inside Goodrich Castle, looking out of one of the windows. The bird was meant to be a bit more prominent in the photo really. June 2008

Fallow Deer


Fallow Deer, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Not a great picture, but I'd been spotted and couldn't really manage much more than this. Taken between Parkend and Whitecroft. April 2009

Plump Hill sunset


Forest of Dean sunset, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Looking west towards Cinderford from Plump Hill. March 2009

Plump Hill sunset


Forest of Dean sunset, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Looking west towards Cinderford from Plump Hill. March 2009

Explosion in the sky


Forest of Dean pre-dusk, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

This was taken just before dusk in the Cannop area. March 2009

Easter Island in the forest


Easter Island?, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

These Easter Island heads are at the Wilderness. No idea how, why or when, but they look pretty new to me. March 2009

Fallow Deer


Fallow Deer in Forest of Dean, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

This herd was spotted near to Brierley in the middle of the day. About 6 adult males were there, though it wasn't possible to get them all in the same shot. I managed to watch these for about 5 minutes before they moved on, but getting a decent photograph was difficult without alarming them. March 2009

Fallow Deer in Forest of Dean  Fallow Deer in Forest of Dean

Fungi


Mushrooms, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken on Plump Hill, October 2008

Cathedral in the Forest


Cathedral in the Forest, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Another part to the sculpture trail in the forest, close to Woorgreen Lake. March 2009

Boar video

By no means a good quality video, but out of the ten or so sightings I've had, its the only other time I've captured boar so far on camera (the first time is shown the previous post, although at a completely different location). There are 6-8 piglets and a couple of adults separated by a fence. They were trying to re-unite with each other when I encountered them, which they did seconds after the video ends.

video
The piglets appear first to the right of the frame as they try to cross a gap in the fence. It's actually just a gap in the foliage, but the boars eyesight is pretty poor. The adults can be seen looking back at me from the other side (fortunately!) of the fence.

Wild boar

Between their medieval extinction and the 1980s, when wild boar farming began, only a handful of captive wild boar, imported from the continent, were present in Britain. The Herefordshire/Gloucestershire population, which is based in the Forest of Dean, originates from one escape of boar of Eastern European origin in 1997 from a farm near Weston under Penyard and another apparently deliberate release near Staunton in 2004 and together now form probably the largest single population in the UK with a total population well in excess of 200 with groups of over 30 having been seen and photographed in several different locations in the forest. More info at Wikipedia.
This sounder consisted of 3 adults, and 6-7 piglets. Location withheld, March 2009

Wild boar in Forest of Dean Mar09  Wild boar in Forest of Dean Mar09

Wild boar in Forest of Dean Mar09  Wild boar in Forest of Dean Mar09

Snowy Branch


Snowy Branch, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

February 2009

Snowy Trees


Snowy Trees, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken near the Wilderness, February 2009

Goodrich Castle


Goodrich Castle, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

One more picture from the castle, June 2008

On top of Goodrich Castle


Goodrich Castle, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken from the highest part of Goodrich Castle, June 2008

Goodrich Castle


Goodrich Castle, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Goodrich Castle near the River Wye, June 2008

Bluebells in HDR


HDR bluebells, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

One of my first attempts using HDR. These bluebells are on Plump Hill, 2008

Above Soudley Ponds


Near Soudley Ponds, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken from one of the paths climbing up above Soudley Ponds, February 2008

Soudley Ponds


Soudley Ponds, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken at Soudley Ponds, February 2008

Tall Trees


Tall Trees, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Vertical panoramic taken near to Cannop Ponds, September 2006

Panoramic Trees


Panoramic Trees, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken on Plump Hill. One of my first panoramics, consisting of 6 or 7 stitched photos. September 2006

Snowy path


Snowy path, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken on Plump Hill, 2006

Plump Hill mast


Plump Hill mast, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

One of three masts on Plump Hill. More will soon appear, courtesy of GCHQ. August 2006

Bat Cave


A big hole, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

This cave on Plump Hill is home to Horseshoe bats. August 2006.

Ducks


Ducks, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken at Cannop Ponds, August 2006

Plump Hill Sunset


Plump Hill Sunset, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken August 2006

Misty view


Misty view, originally uploaded by Ben Locke.

Taken from Plump Hill overlooking Gloucester, if it weren't hidden beneath the layer of mist. August 2006