What an absolute privilege to have these birds visiting the garden. I can’t believe after all these years I’ve finally managed to get some photos of one!

I decided this afternoon to try photographing them, but I didn’t hold out much hope as they are nervous birds. I settled down, lying on the lawn covered by my camouflage, plus some scrim, and hidden by a bush. I needn’t have worried really, as within ten minutes this beautiful dove dropped down in front of me. After checking me out, he/she happily settled down to feed on the lawn. Brilliant!

I got a number of shots, picking and choosing when to press the shutter, so as not to spook him. Eventually the sun came out…

After having his fill of the spilt seed, he calmly flew off back to the hedgerow. So hopefully I might be able to get more photos later.

I’m chuffed to bits, it’s amazing to see these birds, let alone photograph them.

Turtle doves have declined by 70% since 1995. That’s a huge amount! And this delicate dove flies across the Sahara desert to reach it’s wintering grounds. There’s an interesting article in the latest edition of the RSPB’s ‘Birds’ magazine about the migration of Turtle doves and our other migrants. Also there is currently a project to find out more about these migrant birds in their wintering grounds, called Migrants in Africa. (Click to visit their blog.)

A few other birds also posed for me, including the Robin, who is looking a bit scruffy at the moment!

And finally a Woodpigeon…