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Photo Gallery: Norwich photographer Jonathan Lewis captures Norfolk's winter wildlife

PUBLISHED: 10:00 28 January 2013

Nuthatch in snow. Pic by Jonathan Lewis, Norfolk Wildlife Photography

Nuthatch in snow. Pic by Jonathan Lewis, Norfolk Wildlife Photography

Copyright (c) Jonathan Lewis

Every month, we are following in the footsteps of local wildlife photographer Jonathan Lewis. Here is his perspective of what was happening in wild Norfolk during January.

Whilst most of us are worrying about whether we can get to work in the snow or whether the house is warm enough, wild animals are undertaking a tough daily fight with the elements to survive.

Getting enough food over the really cold months can be a problem for many species; if you’re a barn owl, voles aren’t easily detectable as they sleep under the snow, if you’re a kingfisher, it’s impossible to fish through a frozen river and if you’re a fox many of your food sources will be scarce.

Different species deal with the problem of the cold and lack of food in various ways.

Some, like badgers or bats, sleep out the tougher months, reduce their normal activities and therefore the amount of food they need.

Others, like swallows, ditch the cold weather in favour of warmer climes and the rest continue on as normal and tough out these cold months.

The small birds you find in your gardens are a great example of the ones who tough it out.

These little birds can lose up to 10pc of their body weight overnight during cold spells.

This is why you will see a flurry of feeding activity every morning if you feed them in your garden.

With various habitats in decline it is more important than ever to lend a helping hand to your smaller neighbours.

Very soon, new signs of life will be appearing everywhere. Snowdrops will carpet woodland floors, birds will pair up in preparation to raise their young over the spring, trees will bud and some early insects will emerge.

I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait!

February wildlife to watch out for…

- The courtship dance of great crested grebes

- Wood ants waking up slowly from their winter slumber

- The first brimstone butterflies of the year

- Snowdrops on woodland floors

Jonathan Lewis is a wildlife photographer based near Norwich. He runs a variety of courses and tours both in Norfolk and further afield. For more information visit www.norfolk-wildlife-photography.co.uk or www.facebook.com/norfolkwildlifephotography.

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