One of the most ancient woodlands in central London, there are more than 200 species of tree and flowering plant here (such lily of the valley which is not known elsewhere in London) as well as foxes (of course) wood mice, all three species of woodpecker, four species of bat, tawny owl, kestrel and sparrowhawk and the amazing stag beetle. Together with Cox’s Walk and Dulwich Forest it is an incredible space and wildlife habitat.
It is a place we'll likely try to come back to the photograph the bats at night, but on this trip we will be concentrating on finding and photographing as many of the species of fungi as we can. Some, like the fly agaric, are beautiful mushrooms with bright colours and a very dodgy social history, others are harder to spot (like the hare's ear fungus that pretends to be dead leaves), but all can make amazing photos. I will also give you a good background to the species we find as well as some interesting facts and figures about them.
As is customary we will gather afterwards in a local hostelry to take a look at our work, review our day and get to know each other a bit better.
• your camera (any camera will give great results, including smartphones, compacts, bridge cameras and SLRs);
• any lens that focuses closer than about 30 centimetres from the object you are shooting;
• macro lens; wide angle lens;
• tripods that can sit close to the ground;
• flash gun; or even better…
• ring flashes are amazing and cheap ones are available (see below for more**)
• There is no cost for this Meetup. Beer afterwards is always welcome :)
• The entrance at the southern end of the woods on Crescent Wood Road. The following grid reference pasted into your web browser will give you the exact point:[masked] [masked]
• Trains and buses: nearest stations are Sydenham Hill, Forest Hill and buses are frequent
• Parking: Surrounding streets have quite reasonable spaces
There is no cafe, toilet or shelter here so dress for the potential weather and shoes with good grip are recommended to stay safe on muddy inclines. Wheelchair access is possible, but by appointment only.
• Fly agaric fungus is one of several poisonous mushrooms to be found in this venue, so care must be taken to not touch them, pick them, eat them…
• Squirrels throwing acorns at you ;)
** Ring flashes can cost hundreds of pounds if they are TTL enabled (your camera works directly with them to set the exposure correctly) but non-TTL ones which can be proper flashes or consistently lit lights are very very cheap. They attach to the front of your lens and provide great even light for close up shots. Check this example out at about £30: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Macro-Light-Olympus-Pentax-A380-A450/dp/B003LAGNSO/ref=cm_cr_pr_sims_t