Hay Bale Mating Season – 258/365

The 15th of September is the start of the Hay Bale mating season, here in the UK. All across the land, you can see hay bales starting to pair up, and commence their courtship rituals.

Usually, the bales pair for life, all be it a short life after this point. They find their chosen mate, and perform a beautiful courtship dance; consisting largely of standing perfectly still, randomly in the filed from which they were born.

Its quite romantic, really.


Joking aside, I wanted to capture a photograph of the bales of hay a week or so ago, so to find these was great, and it gave me the chance to get that classic harvest photograph. The light wasn’t ideal, but to be perfeclty honest, this was a back up shot anyway!

Izzy and I had actually gone to Moore Natue Reserve, to see if we could see any wildlife, and take some photographs, and I spotted the hay bales on the drive home.


Whilst we had a great time at the Nature Reserve, I didn’t feel the photographs really did the location justice, mainly becasue of the light conditions.

Also, we discovered something called “Raptor Lookout”, so you can guess what that bird hide is good for! With that in mind, I pretty mich there and then vowed to go back one day early morning, and see what birds of prey I could see, and photograph.


That perch above, looks like a prime spot to see hunting birds in the early morning, I would think.

The Nature Reserve is great to walk around, and having seen on the sign at the car park what we had a chance of seeing, Izzy was super good at being really quiet, whispering and treading lightly through the light undergrowth on the track. She really does love the natural world.

Along the walk, she marvelled at every mole hill, every slug, every snail, every insect and of course all the birds and wild fowl on the lake.

We sat for quite some time at the bird hide, both enjoying watching the ducks and geese on the lake, blissfully unaware of our presence, and just going about their business.

For now, I’m glad to have captured the Hay Bale mating season at its peak of activity, and I wish them all the very best for the future, I’m sure they will all be very happy together.

Learnings – I tried a few test “follow shots” on passing airplanes and smaller birds, to get my settings dialled in; and although I could hear some birds of prey, they were in the dense shrubs and trees, and we didn’t catch sight of them. I actually set my camera to aperture priority, something I’ve never really done before, so I could keep the F nunber I wanted, but the camera could adjust the shutter speed as I panned across the sky tracking the birds. It would save me constantly adjusting the shutter speed in my normal manual mode, was my thinking.

Anyway, it was a really nice little outing, and its definitely a location I’ll be going back to, like I said probably really early morning so I might have a chance at seeing a bird of prey, and capturing an image of it.

2 thoughts on “Hay Bale Mating Season – 258/365

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