Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust’s Attenborough Nature Reserve is a great place for photography. The flooded former gravel pits provide an ideal habitat for numerous species. Its accessibility is a key feature. Once there it’s easy to forget you’re only a stones throw from a retail park.

As with many local photography locations, I’m guilty of overlooking it. But with free time and good weather finally coinciding I headed over to see if I could get lucky with a few shots.

I made for one of my favourite spots along the edge of the main pond. It’s great for shooting low over the water and into the rising sun. Unfortunately I was stopped short by flood water. Wearing only shoes I had to walk back to the car for my wellies. Once properly attired I headed back.

The other problem with the flood water was it had gone over the path at the low points where I normally lie to take my shots. After a little head scratching I noticed a reflection pool; otherwise known as a puddle. The main pond was being whipped up by the wind, but my little puddle was nice and flat. A bonus of the flood water was to stop anyone without wellies from walking along the path, leaving me largely uninterrupted.

It was then just a case of sprinkling some seed along the edge of the puddle and waiting to see what crept out of the pond or undergrowth. I had to wait for most of the seed to go before I took any shots, as I didn’t want it in the picture. You can see from the photo, swans are too important to eat with the other birds, so this one tried pecking at the source … me!

Although a lot of the shots are similar I was pretty pleased for just 90 minutes work. The light was great and I like how I’ve managed to take almost matching shots of the male and female ducks.

Here’s to free time and good weather!

Check out my full Attenborough Nature Reserve photo gallery here.