Jeff Clarke Ecology

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Updates and photos from around the world on my travels both through pleasure and work

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11/02/17 Punta Arenas and the Magellan Strait Click on the images to see them at a larger size. After four flights we finally reached our destination of Punta Arenas, Chile, situated on the north side of the Magellan Strait in deepest Patagonia. Here we joined the Fred. Olsen owned cruise ship Boudicca on my latest speaker tour. Among other things I would be lecturing on the birds and cetaceans of the region. I was accompanied on this occasion by my fellow ecologist and cetacean enthusiast Anthony (Anno) Brandreth. Ship business prevented us from exploring ashore so we had to content ourselves with a session viewing the Magellan Straits from Deck 10. Brown-hooded and Kelp gulls were much in evidence, as was Chilean Skua, Souther...
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We boarded the MS Braemar on the 8th Dec in Tenerife where I was to be one of the guest lecturers. By the following dawn, we had arrived in La Gomera and spent a relaxing morning in San Sebastian exploring the local park which hosted a very tame Hoopoe and a number Berthelot’s Pipits and numerous Monarch Butterflies. That afternoon we set off across the warm waters of the sub-tropical Atlantic. After an hour or so we encountered a small pod of Striped Dolphin and a short time later a family group of Short-finned Pilot Whales. Then shortly before dusk that first evening we also had a small pod of Blainville’s beaked Whale. click on the images below to see them at full size. Hoopoe and Betholot's Pipit - San Sebastian, La Gomera ...
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Click on the images to see them at full size. I travelled to Spurn Point for a two-day camera sojourn with my good friend Brian Tollitt. The east coast had been awash with migrants all week but somehow we managed to pick the only two days when there was a relative lull. However, this did not stop us having a fine old time and photographing some wonderful birdlife. On arrival we discovered the rarer stuff had cleared out so we concentrated our efforts on the Easington Lagoon area. The light was lovely and the recently arrived Sanderlings were most obliging. We spent time trying to capture some interesting angles, commando crawling into position, as they probed the sandy shoreline. They were much more interesting and obliging than the...
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All images taken on the 2016 tour and copyright Jeff Clarke 2016 (click on images to enlarge to full size) As a wildlife tour leader I get to visit some really great locations and enjoy the fabulous natural wildlife spectacles they have to offer. I was particularly looking forward to this tour as it would include some whale and dolphin watching off the coast of La Gomera. Teresa Farino (far right) with part of the tour party in the 'badlands' For this tour I was co-leading with one of my regular partners, Teresa Farino of Iberian Wildlife Tours a fabulous naturalist and preparer of incredibly lavish lunches. We convened at Tenerife South Airport as a party of 14 and we soon arrived at our first stop; the badlands of Los Galle...
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At the end of February, I took my Birdcraft group to one of my favourite parts of the UK to enjoy the ornithological delights of Dumfries and Galloway. It’s the perfect destination for an avid gooseoholic and where better to begin than the flatlands of WWT Caerlaverock.  I was aided and abetted by two birding buddies in the shape of Messer’s Anthony (Anno) Brandreth and Paul Hill. We overnighted at the Caerlaverock farmhouse, which gave us the opportunity to enjoy the nocturnal Badger activity, before spending the day admiring the fine selection of wildfowl and waders wintering on the site. Whooper Pond view from the Scott Observatory In late winter Caerlaverock is home to large numbers of Whooper Swans. As always it was gre...
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