Dave loves to focus on the wild side of life

A wildlife photographer from Sleaford who only took up the hobby in earnest 18 months ago has improved to the extent he is launching a Lincolnshire Wildlife Calendar for 2021.

A kingfisher heading for lunch. Photo: Dave Newman. EMN-200709-185620001

Dave Newman, 40, better known for his cricketing skills for Billingborough and his marathon batting sessions for charity, has been combining his love of nature with his new found interest, picking up tips and upgrading his gear to rapidly develop his photography skills.

“I have always loved my wildlife, even as a kid going to zoo,” he said. “I don’t holiday abroad as I’d rather go to woodlands, the Peak District and Scotland and have just gone out with my camera to see what is about and it is amazing what you can see. Other people might not notice or realise they are so close to wildlife as I have been.”

He will spend lunch hours by the River Slea or go off at 5am on a Saturday morning. Lockdown has been useful for Dave, as less people meant more animals.

This blue tit was just over Dave's garden fence and is one his my all time favourites. Photo: Dave Newman EMN-200709-185554001

“I have acres of fields behind my house looking down to the Slea and I can see kestrels, foxes, rabbits, hawks, as well as birds in the garden feeding,” he adds.

He will also drive around local villages with a camera at the ready to stop and grab a shot or head to local nature reserves.

A lot of Dave’s skills have been self-taught, playing around and picking up bits from Youtube and photographic forums. Last year he spent some useful time with award-winning lensman Ben Hall and he often goes out with fellow local snapper Andrew Scott.

Things do not always go according to plan, Dave said: “I was after some kingfishers near Lincoln and was at the bottom of the riverbank, but slid in up to my shins with my camera above my head. Andy grabbed my camera and I had wet feet for the rest of the day.”

Dave submitted this image of a roe deer to the BBC Countryfile Calendar contest. EMN-200709-185608001

Now he and Andrew have made a Lincolnshire Wildlife Calendar for 2021, although the hardest thing was choosing which pictures to include. They have submitted six each, with 200 copies for sale via the website: https://andrewscottphotography.co.uk/collection/lincolnshirewildlifecalendar2021

Dave also sells some of his images and submitted some to the BBC Countryfile Calendar contest this year.