An Irresponsible Chase

This morning, with minimal help from me, Jackie assembled the solar powered water feature bought yesterday. This is not its intended resting place but it has been left on the patio for the sun to charge it up.

On this hazy afternoon we drove to Mudeford and back.

I wandered around the harbour with my camera.

First I focussed upon people taking in the main view, before making my way to the north-eastern side for what I thought would be the best almost monochrome shots.

Take particular note of the elegant swan.

Allowing a glimpse of yellow a sailboarder walked in the water to the shore, where, unbeknown to either of us,

Jackie completed the story as he carried the sail across the sward;

she also photographed the masts laid up for winter, the street lamp, and gulls in flight, one of which perched atop a post.

Now back to my swan and the irresponsible chase. Even when fleeing for their lives swans take a long time to achieve lift-off. Like a bouncing bomb, our Cygnus managed to escape, and the dog returned empty mouthed. The photographer in me saw this as an opportunity; the human being, as a totally irresponsible act by the owner/s who had loosed two such animals in what should be a safe haven.

This evening we reprised yesterday’s fusion dinner with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the Cabernet Sauvignon.


  1. The pet owner should be legally charged for this if possible, how terrible to allow a dog to chase the swans! Makes me mad.

  2. I think I have told you my opinions about irresponsible dog owners before, and their untethered pets in public domains, were it should be “safe” for all creatures to exist…. but for some selfish, arrogant, ignorant reason the owners seem to think their “vicious pet” is cute and ‘above’ societies laws … !!

  3. Is that area a bird sanctuary, Derrick? The pictures are terrific.
    Good going Jackie. The fountain looks great!!

  4. Outstanding “almost monochrome” silhuette photos, Derrick, and the elegant swan with its reflection is twice as elegant. The chase you have captured is fantastic, and I completely agree regarding irresponsible dog owners.

  5. We bought a new water feature too. Photos up in a few days.

    I don’t think I have ever seen a bad photo of a swan. Surely they were the reason why camera’s were invented. πŸ˜‰

    Really good photos, Derrick. Fascinating to see a Narnia lamp amongst the masks. If the buildings weren’t in the photo at all, one would wonder….

    I enjoyed the post.

  6. Criminal rather than merely irresponsible in my opinion.

    That looks like a fine water feature. We have thought of one for our garden as the sound of gently falling water can enhance a garden. Can it also drive you mad? That is the question which has stopped us getting one so far. I await reports on your experience with interest.

  7. Every photo is interesting, Derrick! Congrats. And I think we need one of them solar-powered fountain thingies too. Let us know how it turns out, please?

  8. Jackie’s fountain is lovely – I can imagine the calming sound of the water.
    I wonder if the birds will enjoy it in summer – if so, I’m sure you will get some great photos. πŸ™‚

    Today’s ‘Irresponsible Chase’ was indeed irresponsible.
    What a public lesson for the dog owner!
    But an amazing shot; the swan’s panic, and the dog’s dogged excitement is visceral.

      1. MYSTERY SPANNING MONTHS NEIGH YEARS SOLVED! Contacted WP about you and they fixed it! I asked WHY WHY WHY they said instead of going into Trash you were automatically deleted! But they reassembled you because I suppose they have everything and once more you exist! Who knew? This is surely mad folly but I’m so glad the mystery is solved!

      2. I would love to take photos like that. I have not for years. I used to love portraits. But yours are just … they make me yearn for life and surely that’s the best thing a photo can accomplish.

  9. I have to wonder what the dog owner was doing this illegal bird chase. Hopefully, next time the owner will have the sense to keep the animals on a tight leash.

    I love the water feature.

  10. So much in this post. I love those monochrome bird photos! I agree with all the comments about the dog owners. Did you see them? I can understand how a dog can get away, and it’s natural for them to give chase, but it’s up to the owner to control the dog.
    The solar powered fountain looks great. How clever of Jackie!

    1. Thank you very much, Merril. You are right about the control issue. This is not a location where dogs should be unleashed. Unfortunately the owner/s were part of a larger group of people who were a long way off, and I couldn’t identify them – perhaps some of the visitors who are beginning to return, despite restrictions.

  11. Wonderful narrative Derrick and your visual storytelling is delightful ~ yup
    some owners ?? but mostly
    good dogs…hard to get the dog outta the dog…sending smiles hedy ☺️?

  12. I was practically holding my breath from the start. Thank God the swan got away, but it was still tormented. You have evidence. Years ago, I let my golden retriever run along the beach, but he wasn’t interested in birds knowing they were too fast for him. No swans or ducks. If something slow showed up unexpectedly, I would have gone after him, yelling angrily and he would’ve stopped in his tracks. Your almost monochrome shots are beautiful with their subtle colors. I like the silhouettes, too.

  13. Where are the panels of the solar fountain? Are they disguised into the shape of the fountain? Today’s photographs have a distinct flavour. The monochrome silhouettes have a timeless feel about them.
    The wolfish dog was so close to mauling the swan! Domesticated dogs ought to be trained to suppress their predatory nature.

    1. Thanks very much, Uma. Such dogs are meant to be kept under control. The solar panel is on a long lead so that the fountain cn be in some shade while the panel, which can be concealed in shrubbery, is stretched to the sun

  14. Your muted tones are magical. It creates an almost eerie feel to the landscape. I could almost smell the salty air. <3

  15. The solar powered fountain looks beautiful, Derrick and Jackie! I am sorry about the highly irresponsible dog owner(s). I am glad the swan escaped. Sometimes Mother Nature has a surprise for the unwary dog. We have nutria here (you know them as coypu), and they inhabit waterways. They can grow quite large, and have big, sharp incisors. I heard a report of one unsuspecting dog out for a swim being attacked by a full sized coypu and almost drowned by it.

    1. Thanks very much, Lavinia. This harbour is so peaceful I imagine the owner/s to have been visitors – despite our current lockdown restrictions we are getting a lot of them.

  16. Love the photos but hate the dog owner. Creates a bad rep for all the dog owners especially the responsible ones.

  17. OOH! I love the fountain! πŸ™‚
    Beautiful captures of everyone…birds, included, enjoying the water! I love the bird shadows, the birds being birds, the birds atop the masts and lamps!
    Oh! πŸ™ That poor swan!!! πŸ™
    When Coop was a pup he liked to chase lizards in the backyard. But the lizards always went places he couldn’t follow. He’s never chased anything else, and if he did I’d stop him. In public I keep him on his leash.
    (((HUGS))) πŸ™‚

  18. My first law as king will be to make it compulsory for dogs to be on leads all the time if they are not on the owner’s property.

  19. Lovely shots.I won’t comment on dog owners, as it has already been done.

    However, I will say that there is much fun to be had from solar-powered fountains – mainly variations on standing so your shadow stops it, then moving away and allowing someone else to be sprayed by it. Julia hates it when I do that. πŸ™‚

  20. Lovely shot of the birds that look quasi monochrome. The swan and the dog is also quite enticing. Was nice walking through the pleasant day you had.

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