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Phil's Nature Pages

Phil's Nature Pictures. Page 3.

Welcome to Phil Eyden's Nature Page No.3.

At last I have been able to get the complete set of pictures up on Phil's fab page. Such a delay and for that I must apologise to Phil and the viewers. But alas alas so much to do, so little time etc etc. However... thought seriously that I must get round to it this weekend (March 14 - 2010) as clearly there is a hint of Spring in the air as I write, and we selfishly want to encourage our man Phil to get out there for a further forage in the undergrowth, so that he can bring us Page No 4 for next year, with yet more fab photos. This is no hardship for Phil at all, as he likes a bit of a forage so he does. Clearly though and seriously, the amount of work needed to produce such pictures and of such a consistent and excellent quality is quite awesome. Yes .. quite a task indeed.

So as ever many thanks to the man himself for the effort made in bringing us such beautiful, highly colourful and truly heartwarming pictures. Hopefully they will for a while at least, take our minds of the horrible hospital situation or the dreadful DTIZ debacle. Spring is on its way...


Now to put some detail on the photos. The top shot is marvellous and we are delighted to put it in pole position. It was taken as the sun sinks in the west behind High Meadow here in Dover. Phil, intrepid as ever, and showing no fear of the gathering gloom that awaits us all when the sun sinks, carried on regardless to bring us this excellent pic. Its of a..wait til I check the notes here.. a Meadow Brown, taken appropriately in High Meadow. A real winner.

Next shot down are those gloriously delicate white ones and two together here as well, something of a coup I would guess. These are Marbled Whites and again were taken in High Meadow here in Dover.

The little brown chap, and you will forgive I'm sure the highly technical terminology, on the left of the smaller pictures, is a Skipper. On the right hand side is a Small White.. Both taken in central Dover.

The beautiful orangle coloured chap resting on the equally beautiful yellow flowers above is a Painted Lady. And it was taken on the very local Shakespeare Beach here in Dover. The sharp eyed amongst us will keep our wits about us and watch out for all these varieties in highly local locations in the months to come. Easy to spot perhaps but not that easy to photograph, not in any detail.

Immediately above is another cracking picture. This one is a Ringlet and it was taken in Canterbury's Blean Woods although Phil says you dont need to go that far afield to see one, as they should be a familiar visitor to the famous White Cliffs all around us.

The scary looking guy on the left is not really scary at all, it is just an excellent close-up of the Painted Lady in stunning detail there ..really wonderful to see. Once again, well done Phil all round.
Hope all enjoy the page now in its full completion mode. Roll on Nature Page 4.

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Section Two.


At the time of writing this section, we are in the middle of the bleak midwinter with only a miserable January ahead of us. Glorious Spring is feeling a long way off and Summer that much further away. What then to do to cheer us all up??...yes thats it...treat us all to some of the glorious colours of nature in high summer... through Phil's pictures. If they dont warm up your bones, they should at least warm the cockles of your heart!

Our long time forumite friend and tip top intrepid Nature Man, Phil Eyden, has been out and about in search of the fantastic, yes indeed, while you and I might lazily soak up those gloriously sunny days in an old deckchair, doing nothing at all productive and probably with a newspaper on our heads, or heavens! even a knotted handkerchief! ( can you picture the image), Phil is out there at one with nature, slowly making his cautious way through the barbled garbled undergrowth spotting this winged creature and that...and all for our benefit.

As ever Phil has come up with some great shots and I know from the postbag that lots of you out there enjoy the pictures. So please leave a comment below, its open to everybody and Im sure Phil would love to see it.



Okay let us try and put some detail on the pictures. Phil as ever has sent in good notes as yours truly would be more than a tad lost trying to name names.

Top two shots in SECTION TWO show on the left, the COMMON BLUE, although the name says COMMON BLUE, we dont believe they are all that common, Phil did well to capture this one 'on film' as it were. It was taken at Samphire Hoe. The one of the right is "impossibly rare" says Phil, "and only exists on about half a dozen isolated patches across the whole of southern Britain, Exmoor is the only other notable spot. This one was spotted in one of these colonies, Blean Woods near Canterbury, so I've included it anyway as it is so unusual. It is in fact called a HEATH FRITILLARY and as we say, from Blean Woods. There are probably only a few thousand in the UK." Well there we are...rare indeed.

Just below the top shots the next pic down shows the GATEKEEPER variety of butterfly. Phil did not have to do too much intrepid exploring for this one as the lovely butterfly casually landed within camera range in his very own back garden. A beautiful shot indeed..ah lovely, lovely..

Next picture with the rich deep colours is the FIVE SPOT BURNET MOTH. This one was found on Western Heights on one of those beautiful balmy days.

On the left above we have the gorgeous RED ADMIRAL butterfly, which was taken in Balfour Road here in central Dover. Which shows how important it is to keep vigilant and to keep your camera at the ready if you want to capture such shots as these.

The picture below, number six, is the COMMA, and this was taken in Blean Woods in Canterbury. A cracking picture this one, showing the supremely delicate nature of these beautiful creatures.


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  • Terry Salter

    Fantastic pictures Phil!23 October 2010   13:44
  • Phil

    Thanks again all, your kind comments are really appreciated. :)15 March 2010   20:19
  • Jan Tranter

    Oh wow really amazing pictures there Phil you've captured the colours so well, the time and patience to get these picture's so we can all enjoy them. Thanks Phil and thanks to Paul putting them up there one the Frontpage so we can all see them.

    15 March 2010   18:44
  • Melissa Clements

    Breath taking pictures, really lovely. x15 March 2010   17:26
  • Alexander

    The pictures are truely beautiful, Phil, one can really sing along to it: all things bright and beautiful... It's lovely to know the Garden is full of nature and beauty! 15 March 2010   15:16
  • Phil Eyden

    Yes, that’s right Paul. With the sun setting behind the butterfly it was completely silhouetted, so I put the flash on. In effect the butterfly was thereby illuminated from both sides – I quite like the slightly other-worldly effect. That effect was pure luck as I really didn’t know what I was doing at the time!

    The Meadow Browns and Marbled Whites were taken up at High Meadow where the Konik Horses are kept. Melanie from the White Cliffs Countryside Project told me the other day that we have about 30 species of butterfly up on our hills which is near the very top in species diversity anywhere in the UK. Conservation of the rare Adonis Blue has been so successful by careful maintenance of chalky downlands that it has been taken off the endangered list.

    The WCCP are currently working on creating ‘Butterfly Runs’ in the hills above Aycliffe by chopping passages through the woodlands to connect grasslands. As the Adonis Blue and others live close to the ground and prefer not to fly over trees, it is thought the ‘Runs’ will help the species spread by increasing their habitat. Definitely another local environmental success story.

    The WCCP always calling out for volunteers to help – look out for the new Spring and Summer events programme to be published soon.
    ype your comment here...15 March 2010   13:15
  • PaulB

    Just to go back to Barry W-S's post about the Meadow Brown, yes this is Phil's favourite too as I understand it. It's always tricky getting a shot like that against the sun going down and not ending up with just a silhouette, so it's quite a shot. Im not sure... there is no evidence of it that I can see but maybe just a hint of flash was used to get the balance.15 March 2010   10:48
  • ColetteB

    Just opened this page and the fabulous vibrant colours literally took my breath away! An absolute joy to feast one's eyes upon on such a beautiful sunny springlike morning.

    Well done Phil and to PaulB for bringing together this wonderful spectacle on the front page today. I for one and I'm sure lots of us forumites are looking forward to your next collection of super photos over the coming months.15 March 2010   10:05
  • PaulB

    Hellooo Tez

    Have moved your comment over to the Front Page propper. See menu on left for Front Page. This is Phil's Nature Page and only temporarily at the front so that the pictures will catch the eye more. This page will revert back to just Phil's Nature Page No 3 in a day or so. and the Front Page will revert back to the frontpage in a day or so. I know I know..its a bit confusing..Im even confused myself ermm. I think, sort of, kinda...

    Interesting one you wrote though about the County Hotel will answer that in a minute over on the 'official' front page.

    In the meantime enjoy Phil's lovely pictures.15 March 2010   07:59
  • Barry W-S

    Phil your pictures are truly amazing, the study of the Meadow Brown just took my breath away, its translucent wings capture the mood of Spring perfectly. 15 March 2010   07:44
  • howard mcsweeney1

    having given it some thought, i would say that the marbled whites are the most stunning.

    they were up against some very good competition though.14 March 2010   21:57
  • colin

    Great picture`s again Phil, just makes you feel like grabbing the camera and getting out there. So much about in the micro world, few people realise what`s round them. The weather should be warming up soon I hope.14 March 2010   10:52
  • PaulB

    Wow! just been busy doing this page of Phil Eyden's Pictures and now that its finished and I look back on it as a whole.. its a stunning page. Great stuff Phil!14 March 2010   10:15
  • Andy Stevens

    Beautiful photos as ever, Phil.6 January 2010   14:48
  • howard mcsweeney1

    forget all the technical stuff.

    just enjoy these wonderful photos for what they are.

    sheer pleasure in a world that celebrates "celebs", true beauty still exists and very close to where we live.5 January 2010   23:18
  • N Collor

    Great photos Phil as always5 January 2010   16:59
  • Phil West

    And green with envy PaulB!! It's too good a camera to waste on just snaps though.5 January 2010   13:44
  • PaulB

    You do great stuff there with your Panasonic Lumix Phil and you certainly seem to get the most out of it. Although I suppose it is relatively modest in Pro terms its still a good quality brand though and clearly with a very good colour balance as we can see in the shots above.

    PhilW good luck with your Olympus E-420. I have an Olympus E-330, remember them. A big and kind of ugly heavy beast, but it has affectionately got me through most of the photo jobs we do and never fails. Its only me that fails occasionaly, never the camera touch wood. You would in theory be able to get photos like Phil One with your Olympus E-420, but that sort of photography requires lots of patience, not something I myself have in abundance so have never tried it. But when shots are successful like the ones above, and more to follow, they are immensely popular with people. We are all green and nature mad these days.5 January 2010   08:38
  • Barry W-S

    A Macro Master at work, Phil I love the picture of the Comma, Phenominal, Well Done, Great Shot!4 January 2010   17:45
  • Phil West

    My new Olympus E-420 should do the job without any additional kit. Maybe Phil and Phil can get together sometime and I can learn something from an obvious master of this type of picture taking!4 January 2010   14:02
  • howard

    all this natural beauty so close to home too.

    must be every colour around involved in that spread of pics.

    cannot wait for the spring pics from phil, not that far away really.4 January 2010   11:47
  • Jeane

    Great photos Phil. I love butterflies - and dragonflies.3 January 2010   18:37
  • colin

    Great pictures again Phil. I`ll have to consider a new camera this year. If they`re half as good as yours, I`ll be well pleased. Look forward to some more.3 January 2010   18:34
  • Phil

    Thanks for all your kind comments, I really appreciate them.

    One really doesn't need expensive equipment to take reasonable macro-shots. My camera is a Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ-30 (about £220) with a screw on Raynox DCR-150 macro lens (about £33), hardly professional stuff. One just needs a steady hand, a bit of practice and a lot of patience!

    I may go back to dragonflies next summer after aiming for butterflies this year. Having said that, I wonder if we'll get another Painted Lady invasion in 2010? They are spectacular en masse.

    Thanks again!

    3 January 2010   13:38
  • Phil West

    Roll on the Spring when I can get out and try and at least match some of Phil's cracking pictures. I've been experimenting with the macro settings on my new camera so I have some hope of success - as long as the bugs and beasties stay still long enough for me to snap them!3 January 2010   11:44