Having been suggested by wildlife photography friend Roger that yesterday was to be a warm and sunny day and that we ought to try for the adders at Hatfield Moor NNR, I was full of anticipation. Unfortunately I had another appointment in the morning and couldn't get to Roger's until 11.00. Nonetheless we still opted to go for it. When we arrived it was bright and warm and after a quick lunch we set off to the best locations to try to find some. We were not on our own and plenty of people gave advice as to where we should look. When these reptiles first emerge from hibernation in early spring the weather is usually still relatively cold and they need to bask in the sun to warm up before they can become active; this is a good time to photograph them. At Hatfield, in a favoured part of the reserve, the wardens have cleared areas in sunny spots that they frequent and piled up low brash fences for them to hunt and take cover in and they are able to bask in the cleared areas. These were the spots we searched and were successful in finding several individuals, judging from the darker colouring, all females. Once we had found an individual we tended to disturb them and so we found that the best tactic was to sit or lie and wait patiently for them to re-emerge, which they usually did. It was a privilege to observe and photograph these beautiful creatures at really close quarters.
To view large, please click on an image.