Early winter with the ptarmigan

Ptarmigan at restTwo female ptarmigan at rest in 40mph Northerly winds in the Cairngorms. I’ve been trying to get this precise composition for several years. I wanted an image of two birds ‘mirroring’ each other in this way.



PtarmiganI spent half an hour photographing this particular female. With a very careful approach she was very obliging and allowed me to get close whilst she fed.



PtarmiganCurrently there is very little snow in the Cairngorms after a series of rapid thaws and heavy rain. However on this day there was enough snow to get wintry image backgrounds.



PtarmiganI spent a while photographing a group of 5 female ptarmigan. In general the large flocks that I was seeing during the autumn have now dispersed into smaller groups.



PtarmiganA classic example of the ptarmigan’s superb camouflage. Without knowing what to look for, spotting the birds from any distance can be very difficult.

 

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