Red Kites in the Chilterns

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It is spring time in uk at present and as we had never been to the chilterns we decided to visit,so judy booked a room at a small inn in the village of ibstone in oxfordshire.our reason was to photograph the red kites which were reintroduced to england back in 1975,with huge success . in fact you can see kites from the m40 as they can often be seen catching the thermals .having arrived on 13 may ,we went to  a high spot along the ridge which makes up the chiltern hills ,from which you can see kites very closely .

Photographing red kites

The equipment you need to photograph the kites is preferably a dslr, with a lens  zoom or telephoto of 300mm -500mm in length .good shots are achievable with a 300mm lens as the birds fly very close to the ground ,in fact they often can be seen close up in most of the towns and villages in the area . Setting your camera to continuous auto focus so the camera can stay infocus of the bird is a good idea .this is found on all dslrs  check in your camera manual as to how to do this if your unsure. set your aperture to  as large f4 -f5.6 are great .next set the frames per second to a high enough setting 5 is good . and thats the settings all you need is birds and your set to go so its quite easy to find red kites being a very large bird but chris s cafe in stokenchurch is a good place to head to if you want to have a drink and seat while the kites come down to feed at the outside of the cafe .if like me your more adventurous and want to have pictures on eye level head high into the hills where they also come very close but the backgrounds for pictures is a bit better _DSC8281  the photo above was taken like this with forested sides to the hills this gives a nice background to the shots. having had a great day we head to our overnight accommodation.i cant recommend the Fox inn in ibstone highly enough nice rooms good restaurant,and freindly staff ,and a bar !. next morning after a fantastic breakfast we headed out again for more of the same we were not disappointed finding red kites to photograph is not difficult at all .after a couple hours and full memory cards we call it a day and head home visiting a national trust on the way home .all ain all a fantastic trip and certainly a must if you are a bird watcher or wildlife photography is you thing or both .much info can be found on the internet with just a google search .so i leave you with a few more shots from a memorable weekend

 

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