Covid-19 Options for 2021
It is impossible to predict what restrictions will/will not be in force in July 2021. Photographers on Safari cannot just sit and do nothing. We have to have an alternative plan. After long discussions with the venue we have come up with a plan that should offer seamless photography to all our clients. We must design a workshop capable of being in alignment with any government recommendations at that time. If there are none in force at the time, we can carry on as normal. If we are limited to groups of SIX persons we will comply with those restrictions while keeping ONE metre apart. Face masks will be worn if that is still a requirement. We will have a maximum of ELEVEN photographers. These will be split into TWO groups and we will have the services of TWO keepers if a maximum group size of SIX is still in force. I will split my time between the two groups so that all photographers have equal benefit of my advice.
Take Photographs like a Professional
This location offers absolutely amazing photo opportunities. The British Wildlife Centre have created large natural enclosures to facilitate taking pictures that are normally almost impossible to get in the wild. This venue is normally open to the public only on bank holidays and at weekends, and with only limited access to the animals.
Photograph Foxes at Sunset in a truly natural and realistic setting
It seems most unfair that the best pictures here are usually taken after the workshops have ended. Photographers On Safari have decided not to arrange the normal weekday shoot, but have made a special arrangement with the British Wildlife Centre to allow you to photograph through that very special golden light when the sun is setting.
Inside Enclosures at British Wildlife Centre
You will be allowed to actually go inside these enclosures with the animals and take stunning pictures. There are no unsightly barriers or fences obscuring your view.
The day begins with a short tutorial on photography, giving an insight into the techniques used for wildlife photography. Feel free, however, to ask as many questions as you like on a one to one basis throughout the day regarding these techniques. General and/or individual advice will be given each time we choose a new subject. Group numbers will be strictly limited so that everybody gets a great position.
Inside the Otter Enclosures
We go right inside with the Otters. They will come and take food from their handlers just a couple of feet away from you. Great shots of them are there for the taking, both in the water and on the bank, and there are no fences in the background.
Close-up Shots of Stoats and Weasels
The Stoats and Weasels are also extremely popular. We photograph these in natural settings, often on logs, from only a few feet away over a barrier. The backgrounds have been created to make these creatures really stand out.
Inside the Enclosure with Scottish Wildcats
Wildcats are our next subjects. Here you will be in their enclosure and they will sit obligingly for us on a fallen tree. The keepers have their own technique to make them snarl, and again that special photo is in the bag.
Photograph Badgers in Daylight
This venue has become an amazingly reliable venue to facilitate badger photography. Normally these animals are only found after the hours of darkness have descended upon us. Not Here! They started off by taking one badger from Wildwood that had been hand fed in the afternoon from birth. All the Badgers here have learned from him, and they will all usually appear at about 5pm for their daily supper – right in the middle of our photo workshop. You can spend as long as you like with these animals, and they will even go in and out of their burrows for you while searching for food. Please note that things have changed during the latest lockdown. The original badgers have, unfortunately, reached the end of their lives. The current two female badgers have both given birth to a litter of cubs in 2021. They have become quite nervous for the wellbeing of their cubs. They may/may not choose to emerge from their sett while we are present. Please accept our apologies if these animals do not put in an appearance during the workshop. At this moment in time we are unsure of what will happen in 2022.
Photograph Owls in a Natural Surroundings
A Barn Owl, and a Tawny Owl or a Little Owl will be placed in natural settings to give you that “in the wild” look. We can get as close to these as we want, so again we get incredible detail in the photographs.
Red Deer, Roe Deer, Muntjac Deer, Snakes, Polecats, Frogs and more……….
Other items on display, but without privileged access, are Adders, Grass Snakes, Polecats, Frogs and Muntjac, Roe & Red deer. Excellent shots of all these animals can be taken with clean backgrounds and no wires in your pictures.
Photograph Foxes inside their Enclosures
The foxes are the stars of the show here. The enclosure actually contains a natural den in the side of a bank. This is a fantastic natural setting with hawthorn bushes to boot. The resident foxes sometimes have cubs, and from May onwards these adorable creatures are quite stunning when they emerge from their dens. The dog fox is quite shy, but not the vixen. She is amazing, and it is not unknown for her to come and tug at your shoelaces. We will have two sessions with these guys as they are always nearly everybody’s favourites. One session will be at the beginning of the workshop, and one towards the end as the sun begins to set. The interaction between the foxes is captivating. If there have not been any new cubs born at the centre, iIt is hoped that a young orphan foxcub can be found for our photographic needs.
Photograph a Harvest Mouse & a Hedgehog
An exciting new addition to our itinerary is a tiny Harvest Mouse. This tiny creature will be placed on a single stem and we will have all round access to enable us to get pictures from jut a few feet away. Photographs of these delicate subjects will go a long way towards offsetting the lack of foxcubs. The second “replacement” species is a Hedgehog -once again a very difficult subject to photograph in the wild.
2.15 Meet and greet
2.30 Group tuition and safety briefing + teas / coffees
3.00 to 4.30 We will begin with our first session inside the foxes’ enclosure with one to one tuition as required. We will continue with the Scottish Wildcats before photographing harvest mice on heads of corn (or similar).
4.30 to 5.00Tea (provided)
5.00 to 8.00 We will photograph the Otters in their pool and out on the bank, plus Red and Roe Deer before moving on to Stoats, Weasels, Polecats, and possibly Frogs, Water Voles and Badgers. We will then have a longer second session with the Foxes in a different enclosure. We will finish the day with a Barn Owl, a Little Owl and possibly a Hedgehog. One to one tuition as required.