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On Reflection

By mid-November, the best of autumn's glory has passed and the woodlands appear stark, devoid of leaves. The days are progressively shortening, the nights becoming chiller, this is a good time to grab your camera and head out in search of red squirrels; for those of us fortunate to have these charismatic creatures still present in the landscape. Late autumn is the time of year when red squirrels are perhaps at their most photogenic; the thick winter coat assumes a rich-auburn colour that can vary from a deep-reddish tint to almost ginger and now their ear-tufts are once again a prominent feature.

The best time to look for red squirrels is early morning and late evening when they leave the forest canopy and can often be seen scampering across the ground to bury their cache of nuts to eat later in the winter when food is limited. At this time of year fungi litter the woodland floor; bright-red caps of fly agaric, perhaps recognisable from fairytale illustrations of earlier years.

Waiting patiently by a woodland pond where they are known to frequent can be very rewarding and very special, especially on a still morning or evening with little or no breeze when, if you are lucky, you might capture some wonderful reflection images.

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