Tag Archives: bee eater

Two new Hungarian Bird Photography Holidays

A post rouse red footed falcon typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

Back in the summer, I had the opportunity to travel to Hungary to meet with a hide owner out there; I had heard great things about the area & the species on offer, but one set of hides in particular caught my attention.

A post rouse red footed falcon typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

Now, we are inviting you to join NaturesLens on a new pair of exciting photography holidays, photographing the diverse bird species that inhabit the Tisza Valley in Hungary. With a wide selection of hides designed & built to provide optimal opportunities throughout the area at our disposal, we will provide you with some of the best bird photography opportunities possible, capturing them in flight, within their habitats & interacting with one another.

A gull coasts by the pond hide typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

One of the herons takes off from the pond hide typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

Working from dawn ’til dusk watching this wonderful range of species in action, this is a pair of experiences that you won’t want to miss!

One of the female red footed falcons perched typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

The hides are designed & built to provide optimal opportunities in terms of light, background, & distance for a wide range of iconic species including Red-footed Falcon, Kestrel, Roller, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Lesser Grey Shrike, Red-backed Shrike, Middle-spotted Woodpecker, Hawfinch, Spoonbill, Black-necked Grebe, Little Grebe, Garganey, Ferruginous duck, Kingfisher, & more.

The hides are located in different habitats & the set-ups varied to provide the maximum number of species & opportunities.

A grebe floats serenely on the waters in front of the lake hide typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

For Summer 2018, we will have two new opportunities: the first, is a week long visit to the area, on a full board non-shared accommodation basis with airport transfers & all hide usage & guidance included. This photography holiday is of 7 nights duration, & costs £2199 on a non-shared basis.   It takes place in Tiszaalpár in Hungary, between the dates of 27th May – 3rd June 2018. The trip is ideal for photographing bee-eater, black-necked grebe, common kestrel, hoopoe, kestrel, kingfisher, lesser grey shrike, little grebe, middle-spotted woodpecker, red-backed shrike, red-footed falcon, roller, scops owl, spoonbill & more. Group size for this photography holiday is a minimum of 4 participants & a maximum of 7, plus our guide.

The kestrels are frequent visitors to the hide sites typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Red footed Falcons & Steppe Birds of Hungary Photography Holiday

The second trip is in the format of an extended weekend, & it is designed to allow you to specifically photograph the amazing Red Footed Falcon & other raptors of the Kiskunság National Park.

During your 4 night stay, you will have opportunities to capture images of the falcons as they display, mate, keep their eyes on the nests, fight, & fly. This tour is the perfect introduction to the Steppe Birds of Hungary photography holiday for those who can’t manage the longer 7 day photography trip or can only get away for a long weekend.

This photography break is of 4 nights duration, & costs £1399, it takes place in Tiszaalpár in Hungary, between the dates of 29th June – 3rd July 2018. The photography break is offered on a full board, non-shared basis. As with the longer trip, the photography break starts & ends at Budapest Airport, & transfers between Budapest Airport & Tiszaalpár are included in the cost.

For the next week, both of these holidays are bookable with a £100 discount on each trip, should you book before December 8th 2017, we will automatically discount the price of the longer trip to £2099, whilst the shorter trip will cost £1299 whilst the launch offer is running.

For the longer holiday – you can hold a place with a deposit of £440 – for the shorter tour, a deposit of £280 will secure your place, in both cases, the balance is due 90 days before the holiday commences

David’s images of the Birds of the Spanish Plains

Earlier this year, David was part of a small group who headed to capture images of the birds of the Spanish plains with Pui Hang & myself, we spent a weekend photograph the various species that are to be found in the area.

Ordinarily, we had expected some of the species to have diminished numbers as they would have started to migrate following their successful breeding earlier in the season, however the season had been wet, many of the earlier clutches had sadly failed & so large numbers of birds remained & were trying for a second clutch – this certainly applied to the hoopoes, the bee-eaters & more.

The female adult hoopoe feeding one of the young from this years clutch - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of the Spanish Plains Photography Holiday Continue reading

Birds of the Spanish Plains from a recent visit

Although our main photography holiday for the birds of the Spanish plains takes place in late April or early May; for the first time this year, we additionally visited at the end of May, specifically over the bank holiday weekend. Our local guide opined that some of the species would have left & the young of others would have fledged, so there was a possibility of a lesser selection of species to photograph – this would not be a hardship, given only four photography sessions over the weekend & plenty of species remaining, we would still have plenty to photograph.

As it turned out, this was not the case, we had virtually the same species as those who had visited 6 weeks previous; due to rains earlier in the season, the bee-eaters were still courting, nest-building & mating, the black-shouldered kites had not departed for their migration south & many other species were still displaying a full set of behaviours.

Jason was amongst those who accompanied us on this trip to our location, which is about 90 minutes from Madrid, he has kindly sent in a selection of the images that he captured whilst on the Spanish plains, he had sessions with shrike, bee-eater, hoopoe & time in the carrion hide, which sees visits from black & red kites, storks, many vultures, ravens & more.

We have one place remaining available for the 2017 weekend, which will be held between the dates of May 27th – 29th 2017, if you’d like to attend & capture images of the birds of the Spanish plains for yourself, send us a message using our contact form.

Jason has kindly sent us a selection of his images that we are happy to publish below:

A male bee-eater delicately passes a freshly caught insect to a female of the species - photographed on a NaturesLens Photography Holiday to Spain to photograph the birds of the Spanish plains Continue reading

More participant photos of the Birds of the Spanish Plains

We are pleased to post up another selection of photos of the Birds of the Spanish Plains, taken on the Birds of Calera Photography Holiday, these were taken & contributed by David Jones, who visited Calera with me in 2015, but was so taken with the area & the variety of species on offer that he decided to revisit in 2016, with Dan leading the trip on this occasion.

You can view some of the images captured by Andrew, one of the participants, on another blog post located here & some of those from Dan, who led the trip for us in 2016 & will do so again in 2017 & 2018, here! But for now, here are some great images from David

A Bee-eater captured tossing a bee before swallowing it - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday Continue reading

Some thoughts on the Birds of the Spanish Plains

The rare & elusive Black Winged Kite - photographed on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera Photography Holiday in Spain

Spain’s central plains, about 90 minutes from Madrid, retain their rustic charm & beauty with dilapidate terracotta roofed buildings, rusty farm machinery & very few built up areas. Subsistence farming mixed with large areas of cork oak, olive groves & wilderness create a wide range of unspoilt habitats for the birds of the Spanish plains. This all has the wonderful backdrop of the Sierra de Gredos, a stunning mountain range home to Iberian Ibex, Imperial Eagle, Black Vultures & much more! What really struck me though was the abundance of invertebrates & small birds. A clear indication of how productive the area is. Continue reading

The first client images from the Birds of Calera Photography Holiday

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

Continue reading

Some more great client images from India

As we mentioned earlier this week, we took clients who were participating in a NaturesLens Photography Holiday in India to two locations in India in late March; the first week was spent at Tadoba Tiger Reserve, whilst the second was spent in Nagarhole – Kabini, we also promised to share a series of photos from Jayne, here they are.

Enjoy …

Bee Eaters photographed at a location near Mysore during a NaturesLens Photography Holiday in India

Some of the beautiful Bee Eaters that we took clients to photograph at a location near Mysore Continue reading

Leopards of Kabini – One place remains available

A Leopard peers down from amongst atree within the Nagarhole Forest photographed on a Leopards of Kabini Photography Holiday

A Leopard peers down from amongst atree within the Nagarhole Forest photographed on a Leopards of Kabini Photography Holiday

We’ve got one place left on our photography holiday to photograph the Leopards of Kabini – it is held between March 12, 2016 – March 20, 2016 & costs £2499, everyone on the trip is getting their own single person accommodation with no supplement, that applies to this last place too – in Kabini, you’ll have your own tented cottage, single hotel rooms in Mysore & Bangalore. Flights are superbly priced at the moment – return was under £600 when we checked and booked earlier this week. Full details here.
A Leopard descends from one of the trees of the Nagarhole Forest photographed on a Leopards of Kabini Photography Holiday

More Leopards of Kabini Photography Holiday Details

After flying in to Bangalore & meeting the group, a transfer from the airport will see you spend six nights in the Nagarhole National Park, with ten safaris into the Kabini jungle, seeking the Leopards of Kabini, these safaris are all included in the price. Upon leaving Kabini, we will overnight near Mysore. Early the next morning, accompanied by our guides, you will photograph the blue-tailed bee eaters; the blue-tailed bee-eaters are rare, colourful birds which feeds on dragon flies & bees, the remainder of the day will be spent at the Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary; here the painted stork, Asian openbill stork, common spoonbill, woolly-necked stork, black-headed ibis, lesser whistling duck, Indian shag, stork-billed kingfisher, egret, cormorant, Oriental darter, & heron breed regularly. Upon leaving Mysore, the group will travel to Bangalore for an overnight stay, the following day will see the group transfer to the airport for the return flights.

Birds of Spain, a week of amazing photography

Montagus Harrier photographed in Calera from the hides used on the NaturesLens Calera Photography Holiday

During Mid-April 2015, NaturesLens have been offered exclusive use of some hides in Spain. Located not far from Madrid, the hides provide some great photography of some of the birds of Spain, in short, some stunning species at some awesome locations! This is a trip that offers unique wildlife photography of some of Spain’s best bird species from some of the best hides we know of.

Great Bustard at Sunrise photographed in Calera from the hides used on the NaturesLens Birds of Spain Photgraphy Holiday

Species you should be able to capture incredible images from the hides include the following:

  • Great Bustard
  • Little Bustard
  • Kestrel
  • Lesser Kestrel
  • Kite
  • Black-Shouldered Kite
  • Marsh Harrier & Montagu’s Harrier
  • Hoopoe, Bee Eater, Shrike, Roller & Magpie
  • Curlew & more from a Lake hide
  • Black Vultures

If you’d like to see more sample photos of some of these species, these are available on the booking page – all were taken at the hides that we will be using. If you want to see any further photos, please contact us by email.

[su_promotional_box promo_link_text=”Book Now” promo_link=”https://natureslens.co.uk/event/birds-of-spain-photography-holiday/” promo_content=”Reserve a place on the NaturesLens Birds of Calera, Spain Photography Holiday, with a deposit of only £300, balance due February 2015.”]

Flights to Madrid are not included in the trip price, but are currently available for an approximate cost of £100.

Montagus Harrier photographed in Calera from the hides used on the NaturesLens Birds of Spain Photgraphy Holiday