For me, this week got off to a great start. I found out that I have been accepted onto an internship with the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust that is due to start this summer. I’ll be spending 4 to 6 weeks helping to organise and build their image library, working with the other staff on the islands and generally having an amazing time! You can read a little more about the amazing work that the team out there have been involved with on the RSPB website, such as the the Seabird Recovery Project. Although this summer can’t come quick enough, I will miss getting out around my local patch during my time away. With the length of days stretching out I have been looking forward to those mild early starts of summer, and the lighter nights allowing for more photography time. I guess I’ll have to make the most of it in the mean time!


 Copyright Ed Marshall. I managed to get this shot of a tufted duck pair the other morning, the stillness of the air allowing a low-lying mist to form on the surface of the lake. I was flat on my belly, soaked through I might add, in order to get right down on the eye level of the subject. By doing this it really made the mist stand out that little bit more, helping to separate the subject from the background.


 Copyright Ed Marshall. By contrast, I also took this shot of a great crested Grebe, bringing the reflection of the trees into the image to help create a more interesting composition. I appreciate it’s an image that might not be for everyone, but there’s something about it I quite like.


As some of you may know, I’ve been on somewhat of a quest to find barn owls local to myself to photograph them, but so far I’ve yet to succeed. After struggling through the winter many barn owls haven’t returned to their usual haunts, with a number of people informing me that places in which they were sighted last year have failed to play host to the barnies again this year. You can read a little more about barn owls in the RSPB's online Bird Guide. Though I haven't had quite the success with barn owls I would have liked, I have had some new information that could just prove to be the ace up my sleeve, so you’ll all have to watch this space! I continually take inspiration from a number of photographers who capture amazing images of these birds, and recently I received an email from Natures Home reader Stuart Pike, who had done just that.

 Photo by Stuart Pike. Barn Owls have had a tough winter, with sightings of them in my local area dropping compared to previous years. I can only hope to get a shot like this eventually!

The next issue of Natures Home Magazine, which is shipped around the 15th of April, will be featuring a look at the variety of nocturnal wildlife that can be found here in the UK such as the barn owl, and I for one will be sure to give it a read for inspiration. Until then, get out and about to enjoy what there is to be seen near you. You can either find a local reserve or visit your local patch, but be sure to let us know what you get up to either by emailing to us here at Natures Home, or by commenting below! 

And finally, this weekend Mark Ward and a number of other RSPB members will be off having a great time in York for this years’ RSPB Members Weekend. It’s a great weekend that is packed full of activities for members, including talks and outings around York and nearby nature reserves. If you haven’t quite managed to book your spot on this years’ meet up, then be sure to think ahead for next year, it's a great event and something you can definitely look forward to!