Salty Paws

As diluted sunlight comes streaming through the window I’m awoken by the squalling of gulls – a tangled symphony of disgruntled burbles, high-pitched cheeps and open-throated cackles from chimney top perches. The weather in the Scottish Highlands is always a lucky dip. Some days I wake up to driving rain and moody skies. Today the […]

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Anagach Woods

After one day of the Grant Arms Wildlife Book Festival, I had already ticked off 27 species. The morning started off gloomy so I wrapped up knowing that the Highland air would bite without a little sunshine. After a delicious breakfast I met my guide Sue and we set off. Our destination was Anagach Woods, […]

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An Unscheduled Spring

It seems as if spring has come early, and I’m certainly not complaining. For the past few days I’ve been stuck indoors trying (and mostly failing) to write through an infuriating case of The Block. Multiple times I’ve caught myself gazing outside at the gorgeous sunshine, listening to the spring sounds of birds and bees […]

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To Spy a Hawfinch

After our great grey shrike stood us up last week, I was determined to tick a bird off my wishlist. I did some digging and found there were a few good spots for hawfinches down in Kendal. Zahrah and I picked the best day of the week and headed down, this time with Kacper. As […]

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On the Hunt

After watching Chris and Michaela hunt for great grey shrikes on Winterwatch, I realised what stunning birds they were and that I’d quite like to find one for myself. I asked Cain if he knew of any recent sightings and of course, he did. There was one of these beautiful shrikes in a patch of […]

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The Beginnings of Winter

Before I’d even got to the hide there was a chirruping in the bushes and I turned to see a group of juvenile yellowhammers mobbing their parents, hopping between branches for attention. Three birds flew past overhead and I caught the triangular shape of starling wings as they soared over me. The lake was quiet […]

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Chesters: Day Two

As I peeked out the window this morning, the sun was just beginning to shine. It looked like a promising day and I was glad, as we would be walking ten miles around the Breamish Valley. First things first though: check the Longworth trap for any visitors. Heather retrieved the trap and carefully emptied it […]

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Bike Ride in the Woods

Another visit to one of my favourite wildlife places: Watchtree Nature Reserve. Zahrah and I hired bikes and set off through the reserve, taking a leisurely ride away from the hubbub of the café and car park to the quieter open fields and woodland. The lake was fairly busy. A pair of Mute Swans and […]

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Foraging Foray

Almost all of the natural habitats that can support life are inhabited by fungi. While some species are only found in particular habitats, such as Black Bulgar (Bulgaria inquinans) on oak wood and Purple Jellydisc (Ascocoryne sarcoides) on beech, other species can thrive in many different types of habitats – coniferous woodland, broad-leafed woodland and […]

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Fungi Trail

It’s soon to be prime fungi season and I can’t wait to see what will start to emerge over the next few months. I find identifying fungi a real challenge, and recently I’ve mainly been interested in tracking fungi and photographing it. As with all wildlife though, I think every photographer should know exactly what it […]

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