I’m pleased to finally be able to announce that for the second year in a row I have been declared the winner of the ‘wildlife in HD’ video category in the British wildlife photography awards 2017.
I had an amazing experience at the gallery and award show in London last year and so to win a second time is fantastic.
You can see my winning entry below titled ‘Rock in the Stream’. Once again I thought I would make a quick post with some details about the making of my film and my work photographing freshwater invertebrates.
How it started
My short film follows directly on from my work last year photographing and filming Dippers. After spending much time watching a pair of nesting birds I became interested learning more about the animals that they hunt for, in particular fresh water invertebrates.
Of particular importance to dippers are caddisfly larvae. They are a common food source in our fresh water streams and rivers and make a good sized meal for the growing dipper chicks in the spring. Dippers are also well adapted to finding and dispatching caddisfly larvae as you can see in the film.
Not only that but caddisfly larvae have a fascinating life cycle of their own. They construct intricate casings from material they find in their environment. Different style of casing often denoting different species of caddis. This made them a perfect subject to film.
To make my short film, I recreated the river bed inside several small tanks, using rocks and substrate from a nearby stream. I then added several caddis fly larvae and began filming them go about their daily lives. The greatest challenge was filming them do something interesting.
Originally I had planned to include footage of other species that share their habitat, some of which are also food for dippers. In the end however these didn’t make the edit. You can see a few outtakes here.
The final part of the film featuring the dipper was filmed in the spring in the same location as last years short film. Below you can see the footage preceding the clip used in the film.
I hope you enjoyed watching the film.