Spring Dippers

The White-throated dipper (Cinclus cinclus) is one of my favourite birds. This is largely due to fond memories of riverside walks that were always enriched by the sighting of a dipper, bobbing up and down on a rock or plunging into the flow.

It is my preference to photograph subjects in locations reasonably close to home and so I was really pleased when I discovered a pair of dippers nesting on a little river not too far away. I visited the site several times a week during the spring of 2015 hoping to learn the birds favourite hunting spots and perches. As with many other species dippers are very wary of people, especially those following them up and down the river! The technique I use is to locate an area where they hunt or perch and then get as low to the water as possible; using camouflage netting to conceal myself and my equipment. Once in position the dippers will continue with their activities, paying little attention to that strange clicking thing at the waters edge; often venturing too close for my telephoto lens.

The changeable light at this location made exposure control a bit of a challenge but it did allow me to make a varied portfolio of images. The shot above shows a dipper hunting in the flow with a deep blue sky reflecting in the water. In the picture below the same bird is captured in duller conditions with trees and bank side foliage behind.

© Simon Roy Photography 2015