Hawk, Red, Tailed

Walking by the DVP

My first job in Canada was just off the Don Valley Parkway and some lunchtimes a friend and I would take a stroll around the block, to get a bit of exercise. I always took my camera, although rather more in hope than expectation; on one occasion, this splendid bird decided to put in an appearance…

American, Red, Squirrel

Cootes Paradise

Cootes Paradise (possibly an egregious missing apostrophe there?) is a rather lovely wetland near Hamilton; it is looked after by the Royal Botanical Gardens, although it is a semi-wild landscape. In the not too distant past, the wetlands were badly damaged by pollution, excessive human use and also by the damage caused by the introduced carp from Lake Ontario. Happily, in more recent years…

Snow, Webster's Falls, Winter

Health & Safety

Webster’s Falls used to be one of the finest places to visit in the Hamilton area: a lovely waterfall, with character varying with the seasons and a host of fantastic photographic opportunities. A stairway led down to the base of the falls, from where one could enjoy the river below and, in hot weather, the cooling spray from the falls themselves. Unfortunately, the curse…

Geese, Canada Geese

Geese: shortly after dawn

One distressing aspect of an enthusiasm for photography is the need to get up at a totally unreasonable hour to catch some of the better light; this image required my surfacing when most sensible folk were still tucked up in bed. The Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) is one of the classic sights in their namesake country and these creatures seem to be everywhere at…

Litter!

One thing that never ceases to amaze me is how much litter gets dropped by Canadians in their wild places; if you walk in almost any conservation area, you will find litter somewhere – the ubiquitous Tim Horton’s cups or some plastic snack wrapper or similar. How hard is it to pack your litter out with you? Remember the adage: leave nothing but footprints….

Red, Tailed, Hawk

Red-Tailed Hawk

Being from England, the sight of any bird of prey larger than a kestrel is a rare treat (unless one is driving down the M40 where the magnificent Red Kite is making a come-back); we have a deplorable history of killing off anything much scarier than a pigeon. Happily, Canada still has quite a lot of its more impressive wildlife more or less intact;…

Monarch, Butterfly

Monarch Butterflies

   To see Monarch Butterflies (Danaus plexippus) is one of the treats of coming to North America; having been brought up in the UK on a diet of David Attenborough documentaries, the epic multi-generational migration made by this species has been in the back of my mind since my early years.    Although Monarchs are a familiar sight to people here in Canada, they…

Waterfall, Cascade, Albion, Falls, Fall, Water

Visiting Albion Falls in strong sunshine.

   Albion Falls is one of the more beautiful of the many waterfalls that cascade down the Niagara Escarpment in and around Hamilton.     Rather than being sensible and waiting for good lighting, on this occasion I was there close to midday and had to deal with bright sunshine making the scene hideously contrasty (I also had to frame the shot carefully – there…