Here is a number of wildlife images taken by me during my trip to Ladakh earlier this year in February. Locations I had visited were Ulley village and Korzok. Ulley village is a 3 hour drive from Leh and Korzok is a much longer drive of around 7 to 8 hours from Leh. If heading to Korzok from Leh, then one can stop overnight at Chumathang. Here there are hot springs. Korzok feels like an abondaned ghost town during the winters.
After visiting Ladakh five times since 2011 mainly in the summer months, I have a good collection of wildlife images. Ladakh can be rich in wildlife and I feel best time to visit for wildlife is around the spring or summer months or even winter if one wants to maximum chances to see snow leopard however even in winter this is not guaranteed. The Markha Valley which is a few hours from Leh is a good area for wildlife and also a good trekking destination with the option to stay in local homestays or in tents. The Markha trek is a 10-12 day moderate trek which can involve crossing some high passes upto 5200m.
Malsi Deer Park is a small zoo in Dehradun. I had visited with family and while this is a good park with a decent number of deer, there are not many other animals to be seen. There is a leopard enclosure but at the time of my visit, it was resting. The leopard enclosure is very small and I feel it is not practical. There are a few other animals and birds.
Birsa Zoological Park is a great place to see and photograph animals and they are playing a big role in the conservation of these animals. This is one of the largest zoos in India and it is just 14km from Ranchi. I had visited this park over two days as I felt one day was not enough. However the entry fees are not expensive but since I had a tripod and a large telephoto lens, it cost me an extra Rs.1000 but in the end it was well worth it and also it goes for good cause.
Since I was in Ranchi to meet with some family members, I wanted to visit a few places in and around Ranchi. One of these places was Patratu Dam which is a short drive from the main city. This is a good place to watch migratory birds however during my visit to this place, I only saw Siberian Gulls. Photographing these birds was a challenge due to shooting handheld from a moving boat.
Peak District is another place that I have visited multiple times and is a good place to photograph landscapes and wildlife. Wildlife can include red deer, various birds and other small mammals. I have not yet explored most of Peak District but I intend to do so in the future. It is spread across six counties: Derbyshire, Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Staffordshire, South Yourkshire and West Yorkshire. Not only for photographers, but is good for day hikes, mountain biking and also for running or jogging across its landscape. I myself have done some long hikes in the peak district which involved 7 to 8 hours of walking. There are shorter hikes as well that one can do. However here I am sharing a short selection of photographs of the Peak District taken during 2018.
During Mid October I had visited both Richmond and Bradgate Parks to photograph and experience the Deer rut. This natural event happens every Autumn season and is the most important part of the year for the deer.
Lyme Park which is located near Stockport is a short train journey away from where I live and it forms part of the Peak District. I had visited here just last September mainly to photograph Red Deer which is the largest land mammal in the UK. October is the peak time where the Deer rut takes place across various parks in the UK and I will be visiting Richmond Park and also Bradgate Park which is not only good to experience the Deer rut but also good for bird photography. Overall this was a great experience to observe and photograph Red Deers in large number up close. However during Deer rutting season, getting very close to male stags can be quite dangerous as they are high on testosterone and very aggressive.
Having visited RSPB Bempton Cliffs early August, here is a selection of images taken over the few days I was there. It is home to not only Gannets but also Puffins however Puffin numbers are less in August since they go out at sea and return early spring. Gannets remain until October. There was also some sighting of Tree Sparrows and other common birds such as Blackbirds but did not get to see any Hares or Barn Owls as they are resident to the area. The nature reserve is located on the Yorkshire Coast overlooking the North Sea.
I had decided to visit Hoo Farm which is a small zoo located in Telford. They do have a number of captive birds and animals and they play an important role in conservation. I have visited the zoo on two occasions mainly to photograph wild badgers from a hide located within the zoo. There is a badger sett within the zoo where a group of badgers reside forming an underground network. Every Saturday the zoo organizes a badger watch from within the hide from 5pm to 8pm. There is also other wildlife to be seen as well like foxes however on both occasions, the foxes did not appear. The first visit was good as I got some good sightings of the badger and was the first time I had ever seen a badger.