United Church Hall, Bridport
Speaker Mike Read
Mike Read is a freelance nature photographer specialising in birds, flowers, mammals, other wildlife and landscapes. He lives on the western edge of the fabulous New Forest National Park and has a wide range of images of wildlife, traditions and views from this unique area.
Falklands – This scattering of over 700 islands in the South Atlantic came to everyone’s attention when Argentinian forces invaded in 1982. The resulting conflict was fairly short-lived but the episode lives long in peoples’ memories.
What is less well known however is how fabulous the archipelago is for wildlife. There are huge colonies of Penguins (up to 5 species most years) and Imperial Shags while the majority of the World’s Black-browed Albatrosses nest here. There is even an endemic bird (Cobb’s Wren) as well as a few endemic plant species.
Mammals can include Orcas and Dolphins just offshore while Southern Elephant Seals line the beaches with males arguing over ownership of a harem. There are plenty of raptors, skuas and smaller birds too. It truly is an amazing place to visit and the wildlife is exceptionally approachable as can be seen from his wonderful photographs.