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Semi-Finalist- Tree Creeper on nest.

Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2011 organised by the BBC Wildlife Magazine & Natural History Museum, London.

Tree Creeper 350w0459

   Treecreeper (Certhia familiaris).

      Hiltingbury Lakes, Chandlers Ford, Hampshire, UK.

I came across this nest by accident on the edge of a local woods in Chandlers Ford, Hampshire. The nest was made on the side of a rotten tree stump. I did not think they would survive with magpies around so every time I finished taking some pictures I wrapped a piece of ivy around the nest. This helped hide the birds and hold the log together as it was very rotten and starting to fall apart. I used a very long cable release so not to disturb the nest but it was not long before the parents trusted me sometimes flying down to the tree I was resting on and looking at me. I often see these birds high up from my office window feeding, it always amazed me how they seem to defy gravity jumping forward upside down. I never thought I would ever get the opportunity to film a nest, especial as I am not a serious bird photographer. There was a footpath near the nest and when a cycle rider rode past or a family with a pushchair the chicks would all open their mouths shouting loudly, thinking the vibration was their parents climbing the side of the tree stump. I am just glad they made it, and a few weeks later the tree stump collapsed.