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Piep at 4 months old, so full of life and character…

My closest relationship to a bird was with Piep the pheasant, rescued when he was separated from his mother at a day old in May 2009. I spent much of the following 4 months living in a bivouac in rural South Oxfordshire, England, to keep him as wild as possible and in touch with his wild relatives.

Piep’s development from a tiny, traumatised ball of fluff into a handsome, independent and almost-totally-wild youngster was a joy to behold and participate in. Our adventures together were deeply life-changing, touching me in ways I have no words to express.

At 4 months old, just four days after this picture was taken, Piep was killed by a group of humans whilst demonstrating his territorial defence skills to them whilst off on his travels alone.

Dearest Piep – unique, special, and yet at the same time as simple and ordinary as ‘every pheasant’ that ever lived. Perhaps the photographs I was privileged to capture of him convey some of his spirit, so that a little of his magic may remain in the wider world…

I continue to marvel at the delights of nature’s bounty. Life springs forth at every possible opportunity, and where I can capture a moment of that movement with my lens or in my artwork, I feel fulfilled, delighted, and unspeakably blessed.

As Barry Long once said, whatever happens here on the earth, “I suspect that the swallows will still fly and the children will still sing…”


Featured in High Quality Images 01/01/2011
‘Dearest Piep’ was also featured in ‘The Birds’ in 2010

An expressionistic, exploratory artist, I create without restraint or intent. I am a passionate advocate of natural learning, and this organic approach informs all of my work, giving my creations their vibrancy and spontaneity. An abiding love of nature keeps me going when my rather warped sense of humour fails. Above all, I reject the dysfunction and pain our culture perpetuates. More of the same is of no interest to me. I say “YES” to that which is life-serving: let a new paradigm emerge!

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  • Ben Cresswell
    Ben Cresswellover 4 years ago

    great capture

  • Marjolein Katsma
    Marjolein Katsmaover 4 years ago

    Awesome portrait! I read your story of Piep – I hope you’ll be sharing more photographs with us!
    BTW, this would be great in many more groups – not only are there more groups dealing with birds, but also nature in general (it helps to watch others’s images and see which groups they belong to!)

  • TeresaB
    TeresaBover 4 years ago

    May 27, 2010

  • TeresaB
    TeresaBover 4 years ago

    You are very welcome Jay

  • John D Moulton
    John D Moultonover 4 years ago

    This is actually, a SPECTACULAR shot in SO many ways.

  • Cindy Schnackel
    Cindy Schnackelover 4 years ago

    He’s lovely! Great photo.

  • artisandelimage
    artisandelimageover 4 years ago

  • Ainsley Kellar Creations
    Ainsley Kellar...about 4 years ago

    Such a gorgeous photo of your beloved baby, Piep. My heart goes out to you in your terrible loss.

  • Big ((((hugs)))), fellow Bird-Mama :-) I do tend to focus on the wonder rather than the pain, and like you with Billy, I feel that Piep lives on in ‘every pheasant’, but he was a huge character, and irreplaceable – just another pheasant, but totally unique! I feel very fortunate to have known him and experienced that inexpressible bond we shared: truly a language older than words…

    ’Mama’s Mantra: “It’s the holding on that hurts, not the letting go…”

    – Jay Taylor

  • sedge808
    sedge808about 4 years ago

    I love the stare.

  • pat gamwell
    pat gamwellalmost 4 years ago
  • Thank you so much, Pat – on behalf of Piep and me :-) xx Jay

    – Jay Taylor

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