A Very Exciting Evening
Tuesday was a terrible day of rain but at about 6 or so the rain stopped and out came the sun. I was desperate to get out of the house and into the air and took myself off to my favourite bit of fenland about 15 mins drive from my house.
I went particularly to do some photos to compare with the ones I took in February when we had snow as the fens are now covered in rapeseed plants, but that’s for another post. I also have a particular shot I’m trying to get and if I do get it I’ll be sure to post it.
Anyway I found myself out in the fen following a pair of what I think were red grouse ( anonymous below – alias Caroline a vet friend-has suggested they are red-legged Partridge and when googled she is quite right! ) when up popped this in the distance…
I was VERY excited I can tell you. Not least because I knew it was a deer but didn’t recognise what type of deer it was at all. ( Oh and you can just see the head of the partridge bottom left of the picture which quickly got forgotten )
So I set about following the deer as the sun was dropping; this was a leisurely follow lasting a good half hour or more. I was getting quite close when he jumped across a narrow waterway where it was impossible for me to follow.. grrrrrrr
So these other couple of shots are taken from a bit of distance but still close enough for me to enjoy the encounter very much.
There was a second waterway which you can see to the left of the picture where all the reedy stuff is and you can see the mist starting to rise to the left..
…. there was a 2nd deer which I had not seen before; a female and here she is making her escape, the male I had been following was disappearing to the right of the picture and this was the last I saw of them. It was getting quite dark so home I went.. very happy indeed and with my spirits lifted.
Oh ! and the answer to what type of deer they were ? Well I’ve discovered that they’re called Chinese Water Deer with faces a bit like a teddy bear and with primitive tusks; the males being longer than the females extending below it’s jaw. You can just about see the tusks on either side of its face in the photos above of the male. All very odd! I had never heard of Chinese Water Deer until I saw these which made it all the more thrilling !
You can read about them here on the British Deer Society. Here’s a quote from the website –
“Chinese water deer were first kept at London Zoo in 1873 but escaped from Whipsnade Zoo after introduction there in 1929. Originally being centred around their site of escape they slowly spread to surrounding areas of suitable habitat.
Introductions into deer parks around the country, and subsequent escapes and releases, have facilitated their spread, although wet habitats in the fens of Cambridgeshire and the Norfolk Broads seem to provide them with the best habitat in which to thrive.”
The photos are deceptively bright and that’s because these are my first photos shot in RAW… now I am completely hooked !!
There will be more photos from this rather enchanting couple of hours in the Fens; a place which is fast becoming a favourite to visit with my camera.
If you care to you can read my other blog 1500 saturdays here