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Monday, 9 January 2012

An Introduction...

My name is Tom. I have meant to do a blog for a long time now, and have finally got round to doing one. For those of you that don't know what I look like, there is a mugshot of myself below. Emphasis on the mug in mugshot.

Diving in Plymouth Sound

I have just finished a degree in Environmental Science and Marine Conservation at Plymouth university, where I also completed my HSE professional scuba course.
Its during my three years in Plymouth that I fell in love with the natural world, something that has always interested me, but the course and the insanely awesome coast and countryside in the south west made me realise just how important and valuable wildlife is. Totally inspired, I took up photography, focusing on the underwater world with a SeaLife compact, and an Olympus OM-10 35mm film camera. I made the transition to digital fairly quickly, and bought a DSLR for my 22nd birthday, as my loyalty lies with Olympus (probably not for much longer), and being on an extreme student budget, I bought and use an E-450.
Got to love a bit of Cornwall!

I am not a box ticker, and I am more than happy to leave the recording of individual species and searching for rarities for the box ticking enthusiasts. Don't get me wrong, I get thrills from seeing rare species, but for me, I am far more interested in the behaviours and characteristics that make every species of flora and fauna so individually spectacular in their own right. As much as I love everything wild, my true passion lies with the Elasmobranchs - Sharks, Skates and Rays, and the bizarre Chimearas. What could be better than a species with two more senses than the human being, evolving over 450 million years, one of the worlds most accomplished, and probably feared, apex predators, totally misunderstood yet play a vital role within the ocean ecosystem, which in turn has a major influence on the entire planet. I also love Kingfishers. They are relatively far easier to photograph than sharks, especially when you live in Bedfordshire...
Kingfisher on the River Ivel

I hope to blog, on a monthly basis, what I discover, with interesting facts, and also post some of my attempts at photographing wildlife as I go. I have no idea how successful the blog will be, and whether or not I will manage to keep it up, but most importantly I hope you enjoy reading it, and maybe even learn something new!

My next blog will include my wet and windy winter trips to the Isle of Wight and the Lake District, mostly in the hope of seeing our native Red Squirrels...