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The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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Despite the pouring rain early this morning, I was adamant that I wanted to do something other than just stay inside. I'd been browsing the web yesterday, after being inspired by eithnepdb's photos, to search for butterfly farms. I found one just beyond Southampton that was more of an animal sanctuary: The New Forest Otter, Owl & Wildlife Park.

We had invited Jo & family who are back from their Europe cruise, but Jo said they didn't have the money. We also invited Mum and Dad who came along.

It was a fabulous opportunity to take a lot of photos, as I'm continuing to enjoy photographing "wildlife".

Asian Short-clawed Otter

^Classic shot of Asian Short-clawed Otter.

Asian Short-clawed Otter

^A couple of times a day all the otters are fed, and it's a great time to take plenty of photos as they get close to the keepers. This one has a chunk of trout.

Eurasian Otter

^"Is there something in my teeth?" Eurasian otter slurps down a trout's tail fin...

Eurasian Otter

^... and then has a good lick of his chops. Not the best photo technically, but I loved how the only thing in focus, more or less, was the tongue.

Juggling Asian Short-clawed Otter

^And what do otters do after they eat? Juggle of course! Stones, twigs, and anything to hand. They're a joy to watch while they juggle.

Eurasian Otter

^A Eurasian otter has a good yawn after his lunch.

Juggling Asian Short-clawed Otter

^And the Asian Short-clawed continues to juggle.

Fallow Deer (Stag)

^Along with lots of otters and owls, the park has several types of deer. Here a Fallow Deer stag, who is losing the "velvet" from his antlers. Plenty of crows were gathering to eat it. Yuck!


^Classic wallaby shot.

Lynx Eating Rabbit

^And another animal in the park, a 19 year old Lynx. Along with chicks and quails, his favourite food apparently is rabbit.


^Lynx again, a gorgeous animal.

Wild Boar

^Wild boar, one of which had a litter of babies last Monday.

Fallow and Sika Deer Feeding

^Feeding time for a Fallow and Sika deer.

Fallow Deer Feeding

^Fallow deer having some salad.

Muntjac Deer

^A tiny almost-rabbit-sized Muntjac deer.


^Wallabies, with three eating in the background.

Ural Owl

^Ural Owl.


^A butterfly that landed on Mum's shoulder.




^Again, technically not a great shot, but I was trying to get in as close as possible, like the detail, and like how the out-of-focus gradient fill came from nowhere.




^Butterfly, with gorgeous wing detail...


^Butterfly, with different wing detail...

Butterfly Emerging From Pupa

^A recently emerged butterfly, waiting for his wings to dry.


^Another butterfly that had just emerged from it's pupa.


^Sneaky photo taken of Lu, while she concentrates on taking a photo!








^This poor spider caught a butterfly, which Dad set free.

Butterfly Feeding

^Butterfly feeding on a piece of apple, along with hundreds of fruit flies.

Sleepy Red Fox

^A just-about-visible Red fox sleeps in some hay.

Scottish Wild Cat

^The best of a bad bunch of a photos of Scottish Wildcat. Photos of a lot of animals and owls were near impossible to take either due to lack of light, or wire fencing.

Bush Cricket?

^Leaving the park we went to Nan's retirement home... Dad forgot what this was, so for the moment it's a Bush Cricket that was hiding in Nan's room.


^And my 97-year old Nan, who I almost caught smiling.


^And finally a photo of Dad, with a mad-professor-like air about him!

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All of the photos are really wonderful Mark but I especially love the otters!

Thanks! Yep those otters are such characters, full of fun and mischief, and a joy to take photos of.

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