Exmoor wildlife photography course images shot by Nigel Hicks during his 21st October 2023 workshop
Lynmouth, in Devon, and Dunster, inSomerset.
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The aim of this Exmoor wildlife photography course was to photograph, firstly dippers on the East Lyn River in the village of Lynmouth, and then secondly red deer on the hills around the town of Dunster. Both locations are in the northern area of Exmoor National Park, and offer some good opportunities for wildlife photography.
Dippers are a small, rather rotund bird that lives on fast-flowing rocky streams. As a result, it’s quite common on both Exmoor and Dartmoor, although it is usually quite a shy bird and hard to approach.
The day started with steady rain, but after about an hour it stopped and the sky partially cleared. In patrolling a relatively short stretch of the East Lyn River, we had a number of good close encounters with several dippers. Each ‘performed’ well, doing what dippers do, skipping from rock to rock, diving under the water, picking at insects and crustaceans. It was all good material for my students’ cameras.
In the afternoon we headed over to Dunster, on the northeastern edge of Exmoor. Here, we walked into hilly country, and soon came across a group of red deer, consisting of several females, a number of fawns and one young stag. Some rather distant photography was possible, but when we tried to get closer the deer were soon spooked to retreat – at a leisurely pace – into the nearby forest.
We did follow them into the trees, but we weren’t able to get close enough for any good photography. What we did find, however, were lots of colourful fly agaric fungi that just cried out to be photographed.
So, all in all, a partially successful day, which in terms of wildlife photography makes it a good day!