The first client images from the Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

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We’ve been sent some great images from clients in the last week, we will start with a few images of the Birds of Spain, from one of the participants that attended the Birds of Calera Photography Holiday at the end of April, Andrew Oldacre, who had this to say about the trip …

“The hides, their location & backgrounds, all worked well & the opportunities to take some stunning images were many & regular … Overall I can heartly recommend this trip!”

More on these particular birds in an upcoming post from Dan, but the lake hide & the black-winged stilt that was in attendance appears to have been a hit with quite a few of the participants.

A Black Winged Stilt photographed from a lake-side hide - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday
A Black Winged Stilt walks along the shoreline photographed from a lake-side hide - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

There is a limited opportunity for photographing both the greater & little bustards as their lekking season is relatively short but we are lucky enough to be able to time the trip to take advantage of this small window. This meant that our trip participants were given the opportunity to spend time in the bustard hides, as Andrew did when he captured this image of a Great Bustard.

A Greater Bustard on the Spanish plains - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

One of my personal highlights when I have led this trip are the hoopoes. Our location for photographing these wonderful birds is in an olive grove. The hoopoes have nested here for a number of years, bringing up their young in the base of a tree, & allowing them to fledge in the safety of the grove. This year, the young were a little older than when I have seen them in the past, meaning that the participants were able to get some amazing photos of the adults feeding their young.

A Hoopoe delicately feeds it's young - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday A Hoopoe feeding it's young in a Spanish olive grove - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

Whilst most people have seen common kestrels, the lesser kestrels are a less well-known bird, typically they build nests in the roof areas of farm buildings. One of the hides, that we make use of, is built on a tower, meaning that the shots that are possible are at the same level as the birds. The weather was generally kind, but has been a little wet in the weeks previous, meaning that some of the species were still showing mating behaviour!

A pair of mating Lesser Kestrels on the Spanish plains - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

Amongst the other species on offer for photography were Azure-Winged Magpies, Little Owls, Red-legged PartridgesSouthern Grey Shrikes as seen below.

One of the Southern Grey Shrikes found on the Spanish plains - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

Red-legged partridge found in the fields around Calera on the Spanish plains - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

Always a hit, always a lot of fun, the last-but-one image for this post is of a bee-eater, unaware that one of his fellow birds is about to swoop in from behind

The ever-colourful bee-eaters of the Spanish plains - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

Do you want to photograph the birds of the Spanish plains?

If you would like to join the group to photograph the amazing birds of the Spanish plains, which will again be led by Daniel Trim in 2017, then you can book the 2017 Birds of Calera Photography Holiday for the same price as the 2016 participants paid, that is £1749 for a 9 day trip, but this price is only available until June 1st 2016, so book now if you would like to take advantage of this special offer price. After the special offer has closed, the price will rise to £1899.

We include all transport from Madrid Airport to the area in which the hides are located, transport to the hides themselves, accommodation on a full board basis, usage of the hides for 7 days & plenty of laughter. You should be presented with opportunities for photographing Bee-EaterBlack VultureBlack-Winged KiteCommon KestrelGreat BustardGriffon VultureHoopoeImperial EagleLesser KestrelLittle BustardLittle Owl & more besides!

The Final Image

Nature is often cruel & the last image of this set is a bit bloody, but it is a reflection of the behaviour of the birds – please do not scroll down if you are squeamish …

A common kestrel on it’s perch devouring prey, the kestrels in the area are superb & very photogenic.

A kestrel perched with it's prey on the Spanish plains - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday