Pictures by Walter

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20170724 – Stroll Around The Loch

Livingston, formerly Livingston New Town, is situated between Glasgow and Edinburgh and easy to get from west and east.  Being sited next to the M8 and the A71 gives Livingston good road connections to North, South East and west.  Linlithgow (Historic Town) is the other side of the Bathgate Hills and is approx 30 minute drive from my home.

St Michael’s Parish Church

(1) St Katherine’s Aisle Window

Churches dedicated to St Michael have traditionally been placed on high ground and St Michael’s Parish Church, Linlithgow, is no exception. Built on the rise between the town of Linlithgow and Linlithgow Loch, anywhere else this large church would command instant attention over a wide area. But here it shares the stage with its larger neighbour, Linlithgow Palace, which lies immediately to its north.

(1)  St Katherine’s Aisle Window – Technical details: Canon 500D,  f4.5, Canon EFS 18-200 mm Zoom @ 28 mm,  Shutter 1/40th sec ISO 100

(2) The Choir Technical details: Canon 500D,  f3.5, Canon EFS 18-200 mm Zoom @ 18 mm,  Shutter 1/30th sec ISO 200

 

Stroll Around Linlithgow Loch

A circular walk 2.25 miles around Linlithgow Loch is a nice way to while away some time.  Dependant on how you treat the walk it can take 30 minutes for joggers to an hour for the stroller, even more if you stop to enjoy the wildlife and views etc.  Feeling somewhat housebound Susan and I decided to go feed the swans and ducks – taking seed not bread, and my camera.

(3) Technical details: Canon 500D,  f85, Canon EFS 18-200 mm Zoom @ 18 mm,  Shutter 1/200th sec ISO 100

 

Swans, Ducks etc.

The loch is well known for the water fowl, ducks and swans.  Whilst used to humans around them they are still untamed wild birds, and if you get too close you get one warning, especially from a mute swan.

(4) Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)

(4) Technical details: Canon 500D,  f3.5, Canon EFS 18-200 mm Zoom @ 18 mm,  Shutter 1/30th sec ISO 200

As we walk around the loch the terrain changes to a wilder less maintained landscape.  This of course allows the wild flowers to bloom and prosper much to the delight of the bugs, butterflies, moths and of course THE flower of Scotland – The Thistle.

(5) Bee and Thistle

(5) Technical details: Canon 500D,  f8, Sigma 150-500mm Zoom @ 500mm,  Shutter 1/840th sec ISO 200

Royal Ruins – Linlithgow Palace

As we walk around the loch the ruins of the once Royal Place of the Stuarts attract the eye.  Birthplace of the last Queen of Scots, Mary Stuart the ill fated Queen.  James V before he died is reported to have said “it came wi a lass, it’ll gang wi a lass” (meaning “It began with a girl and it will end with a girl”).

(6) Cross of St Michael’s and Linlithgow Palace Ruins

(6) Technical details: Canon 500D,  f8, Canon EFS 18-200 mm Zoom @ 100 mm,  Shutter 1/125th sec ISO 125

Gallery

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20170626 – Laugh of the Kookaburra

Walk-through Aviary Re-opened

On our two previous visits to Five Sisters Zoo the walk-through aviary was closed due to the threat/possibility of avian – flu. Being a bird lover I think this is one of the best things in a zoo.  It may not be big, but it has loose flying birds which act naturally and not caged.  Admittedly there are cages birds in the zoo, may hap some day they will join the others in the walk-though aviary. On this visit it was as if the Kookaburra was celebrating the re-opening of the Aviary as his/her laughing call could be heard all over the zoo.

(1) Kookaburra

(1)  Head profile of Kookaburra- Technical details: Pentax K-50,  f6.3, Sigma 18-270 mm Zoom @ 155 mm,  Shutter 1/250th sec ISO 100 

What Plant?

As we walked up to the Bears’ enclosure we enjoyed the blooms and bushes which surround the walkways.  Indeed the Zoo has a lovely new walk “The Secret Garden” unfortunately we did not get a chance to walk through it as it was still in preparation.  One of the bushes caught our eye and we have been trying to identify it ever since.

(2) What Plant ? – Technical details: Pentax K-50,  f14, Sigma 18-270 mm Zoom @ 250 mm,  Shutter 1/320th sec ISO 1600 

(2) What plant?

 Walk with a Bear

We have been lucky this year, seeing the lions and the bears on each visit.  Today it felt as if the bear was giving us a tour of her spacious home which she shares with two other ex-circus (rescued) bears.  Believe me when you read their story you will realise that their caged area is indeed spacious.

(3) Walk with a Bear

(3) Technical details: Pentax K-50,  f6.3, Sigma 150-500 mm Zoom @ 500 mm,  Shutter 1/500th sec ISO 800

Let Sleeping Cats Lie

Not far from the bear enclosure the ex circus lions have a spacious pad with a view.  However, like all cats the spend most of their time sleeping.  Seeing the size of their paws I’d just let them sleep.

(4) Let Sleeping Cats Lie

(4) Technical details: Pentax K-50,  f5.6, Sigma 150-5000 mm Zoom @ 290 mm,  Shutter 1/400th sec ISO 200

Stalking Wolf

Across from the lion enclosure the Arctic Wolves normally patrol the perimeter of their space.  This visit coincided with feeding time and gave me the chance to capture a wolf stalking they keeper (who was outside the fence) and the feed bin :).

(5) Stalking Wolf

(5) Stalking Wolf : Technical details: Pentax K-50,  f6.3, Sigma 150-5000 mm Zoom @ 340 mm,  Shutter 1/400th sec ISO 800

Gallery

Baby fascinated by Ring Tailed Lemur

 


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20170120 – Road Trip Killin

Visit to Killin

We usually visit Killin at least twice a year January and May.  It is a historic village and the ancient burial ground of  Clan McNab  is accessed via the old Killin Bridge.  Wikipedia has this to say about the village “The west end of the village is magnificently sited around the scenic Falls of Dochart, the main street leading down towards the Loch at the confluence of the rivers Dochart and Lochay. The falls are crossed by a narrow, multi-arched stone bridge carrying the main A827 road into Killin.”  The charm of Killin is the villagers and their community spirit.  As I said we go at least twice a year, January to see their pantomime and May to support the Killin Komedy Festival.  This trip was also a proving trip for my recent acquisition a new Pentax K-1 full frame DSLR.

Loch Lubnaig

Our route takes us past Loch Lubnaig – a very picturesque loch.  The loch has a remarkable mirror reflection, provide the conditions are right.  It is one of our regular stops:

Technical details – Pentax K-1 fitted with Sigma 18-270mm Zoom Lens set at 43mm f10 ISO 100 shutter 1/13th second. Image processed from raw in Lightroom

Susan – My Partner

I like this picture as it shows Susan’s remarkable outlook at life.  Hard to believe she is recovering from a serious fight with cancer and at the time of this picture was still waiting the all clear. ( Which she got later in the year)

Technical details – Pentax K-1 fitted with Sigma 18-270mm Zoom Lens set at 80mm f10 ISO 3200 shutter 1/125th second. Image processed from raw in Lightroom

Falls of Dochart

I suspect one of the most photographed water falls. I have several pictures of the falls in various states this was a first as I managed to cross to teh centre without getting my shoes wet!  The main channel flow was that abated.

Technical details – Pentax K-1 fitted with Sigma 18-270mm Zoom Lens set at 29mm f9 ISO 3200 shutter 1/40th second. Image processed from raw in Lightroom

Gallery

 


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20170104 – Sun Cats

Visit to Five Sisters Zoo

A New Year dawned and we felt enlivened.  The long slog from 2015 to the end of 2016 was over and the news at the end of 2016 was optimistic.  I am making a few changes to the format of this blog.  No long-winded text, just 1 or 2 images with comment and a link to the album on Flickr.  I’m not touting for business so I select the picture(s) that pleased me or/and Susan.  I would welcome feedback – provided it is constructive and not abusive.

Two images from our visit to Five Sisters Zoo, Polbeth, West Lothian on the 4th January 2017.  The sun was shining and a bright future beckoned so what better way to celebrate than visit the ex-circus lions at the Zoo.  It is often hit or miss when one goes to the zoo, in all likeliness the animal you wish to photograph fail to show, this time the four lions were out on their hill.  I had decided not to lug round all my camera lenses (mistake) and opted to use my Pentax K-50 with fitted with a Sigma 18-270 mm zoom.

The Sun Cat

Technical details – Pentax K-50 fitted with Sigma 18-270mm Zoom Lens set at 210mm f5.6 ISO 400 shutter 1/250th second. Image processed from raw in Lightroom

Kings of the Hill

Technical details – Pentax K-50 fitted with Sigma 18-270mm Zoom Lens set at 210mm f5 ISO 100 shutter 1/200th second. Image processed from raw in Lightroom

Gallery

Sun Worshiper