Yesterday was a very productive day for my photography, and along with lots of other local photographers and bloggers I have read recently I ended up at Mumbles Pier to photograph the Kittiwakes. Saturday morning was quite overcast, which is the best conditions to make photographs of black and white birds if possible. The softer light reduces the contrast in the image making easier to handle the range of tones in the image.

The birds have nested towards the end of the pier, and seem very content with their position. For a gull colony it is very quiet at the moment. I’m sure this will change when the chicks hatch. One pair has two chicks at the moment, but most are still incubating eggs. They are very tolerant at the moment, probably due to the regular visits of fishermen to the pier, which allows easy access to the birds.

I hope to get back more often to photograph the rest of the life cycle while they are around and before they head back out to sea. For some reason I think that I read that Kittiwakes are under threat, but my RSPB bird guide says they are secure at the moment. I hope that if the new development proposed for the pier proceeds, that the Kittiwakes are still able to nest on the pier. It is an incredible privilege to have access to these birds and watch an intimate part of their life.

Nick

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