New arrivals

With autumn just around the corner and the mallard drakes of Aberystwyth harbour already moulting into their eclipse plumage signalling the end of the breeding season, it looked as though I had missed the opportunity to meet any ducklings this year. It was therefore a very pleasant surprise last week to stumble across a brand…

Sighting: Golden Ringed Dragonfly

Having spent some 6 years now living beside the harbour ‘gap’ in Aberystwyth I feel I have come to know the area and it’s inhabitants rather well. Even so there is still the occasional new sighting to surprise me. Whilst the delicate damselflies are a relatively common sight during the heat of the summer I…

Murmuration Calendars now available!

One of the few positives of last year’s lockdown was the opportunity to dedicate much more time than usual to photography, in particular documenting the annual spectacle of our starling murmurations here in Aberystwyth. Over the winter I spent many evenings stood shivering on a windy jetty, or huddled on the beach beneath, eagerly awaiting…

Days Out: Gigrin Farm

With family visiting from England last week and glorious weather forecast it was the perfect time to take a visit to a place that has been on my bucket list for some time now, Gigrin Farm famous for it’s spectacular gatherings of Wales’ iconic bird, the red kite. Gigrin farm was first established as a…

Life in the wildflower verge: Part I

After an absolutely dismal May which was quite literally a wash out, it’s nice to see the return of sunny skies here in Aberystwyth. Thanks in part to all that rain, and the absence so far of the council mowers the wild areas around the harbour have sprung into life providing a habitat for all…

Fight or flight

It’s now mid May and for many birds the breeding season is now in full swing. Down in the harbour waters of ‘the Gap’ the mallard ducks have already begun to pair up, however as is common among many duck species, males outnumber females quite considerably. For those that are unsuccessful in winning a mate…

If you go down to the woods today…

With sunny skies and a few hours to spare between shifts at work on Friday, it was the perfect opportunity to hunt for bluebells in the grounds of Nanteos Mansion. Nestled between two small nature reserves, Old Warren Hill & Coed Penglanowen their ancient woodlands provide the perfect unspoiled habitat for numerous species including these…

Sighting: Black Headed Gull (first winter)

My blog has been rather neglected in recent weeks, with lots of half written adventures and a pile of unedited photos still waiting to be looked at. Today I resisted the urge to head out under yet another brilliant blue sky and instead finally sort through several weeks of accumulated images… It was back at…

Decimation

A visit to one of my favourite local ‘patches’ earlier this week did not bring me the joy I had hoped for, in fact quite the opposite. On arrival I discovered to my shock and horror that the hedgerow running the length of the stream at Plascrug ditch has been decimated! Where once there was…

Shapeshifters

My final ‘starling watch’ of the season looked like it was going to be a rather underwhelming one despite an almost perfect golden sunset. Numbers were still impressive but certainly down from the previous weeks and the starlings flew unhurriedly, swirling slowly around the pier until they began to drop from the sky into the…

In search of snowdrops

As winter begins to make way for spring I have been eager to find a good spot to photograph snowdrops, before they wilt and wither to be replaced by more fair-weather flowers. All I have found so far is a few underwhelming isolated clumps here and there on my daily walks, not quite the carpet…

Sighting: Bullfinch

After a couple of bitterly cold weeks, now it really is starting to feel like spring is just around the corner. With the sun shining bright yesterday I was keen to get out and explore a recently discovered ‘patch’, the Rhydyfelin cycle path. This short stretch of the Ystwyth trail may not sound like an…