Hanging in the Wind

Northern Fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis) In flight, Scotland

Fulmars are small cousins to the albatross, and like them, are creatures of the wind. And on my recent trip around the British Isles, we had PLENTY of that: including the worst spring storm in Scotland in 50 years, with sustained 60-70 mph winds.

But while most birds were sticking to their burrows, the fulmars were as happy as they could be, literally hanging in the wind. They would soar past the cliff-tops at eye-level, challenging the limits of autofocus and eye-hand coordination, but offering a rare close-up view. I won’t tell you how many frames I shot to get this one, but thank God (and Lexar)  for 16 gb cards…

Northern Fulmars nesting in wildflowers

The second shot was taken on a much quieter day, as I discovered a group of fulmars nesting on a slope of Sea Pink (Armeria). It is a much more subtle image, full of rich detail which should really be seen bigger than on this thumbnail. All I can say is that it would make a great jigsaw puzzle…

I will post more as I get things edited from this month overseas. I had hoped to post more regularly while on the road, but time – and satellite connections – made it impossible.

Nikon D3, 300mm f2.8 lens