30 March, 2020

Out In The Sunshine.

Having finally gained Vengeance on the diabolical eeeevil that is the Kentish Plover [Ivan, you are still a Star], I have been of the opinion that I'll twitch a yellow House Finch with three different plastic rings before I go for another one.

Until it's Yearlisting time...

Then, I have no choice, so I get there as soon as Life will let me.

Travails and woe beset me at every turn, but Mr Eagle told me it was still there, so with tide falllling I hoofed it the long long long way round to the hide at Dawlish Warren...

What came next? Peekaboo, KP style.

What do you mean, you can't see it??

Easier with more water, of course.. :)
[I should point out that this was taken on my way back.!]

Those dreaded words mobile and elusive certainly sprang to mind, with dead ground another very appropriate term. Still, I wasn't going anywhere - nothing like proper social distancing with not a bod within hundreds of metres :) - and for once a couple of wandering humans proved helpful, clearing the two biggest 'if she's there I'm stuffed' areas. Kentish Plovers have an irritating habit of running not flying, so I wasn't surprised to not get anything flushed, and had to wait until said running brought said plover into my view.

Not close, of course, oh no..

Tan and white blob
Kentish Plover
[plus Curlew]

Yup, classic photo.

While I was waiting, I finally caught up with Whimbrel for the year, and also got another yeartick, which I was quick enough to catch on photons!


Also of note - or at least, photo - were;

Spot the Skylark

::Takes deep breath::

Curlew at reasonable range


Getting back to getting back...

Seif dunes in the Saharan erg
or ripples in the Warren sand?

Lee slopes catching the sun, wind from bottom right.

I don't think that's a camel..

Sea side

The new 'defences'

The day before, we found an entirely safe and reasonable way to have a Traditional-ish Mama's Day Nicpic.
This involved finding a nice spot - my favourite lunch spot on the fritillary slope, as it happens - and sitting on seperate things [to whit, a foldy stool, a foldy chair, and a fancy nicpic blanket]. Social seperation achieved [the blazing sun and fresh breeze didn't hurt either] we had coffee out of seperate mugs and cake on seperate plates at double arms' distance. Despite this malarky, it was lovely.
It would have been even better if my fecking camera had decided to focus on what came soaring up and almost over us, but hey, what can you do?

At least one raptor posed.


Honey cake

[A nice broad-bladed knife like that santoku there and a firm cake means you can serve 'safely'. Yes, we think of everything]

I type in the dark sunshine of the Long Quarantine and these two days now seem distant and golden, as like halcyon days of yesteryear..

Bugger this, where did I leave the grog??

Be Seeing You...

27 March, 2020

More Patchy Stuff. Pt 1

In which not a lot new happens, but never mind, eh? It's the effort that counts. Well, sort of.

Last week I found myself in Towne, so I had a look along the pier


One of eight Purple Sands along the real living coast.



9 about, 8 scurrying on the slipway and one asleep with the sands..

Pied Wagtail

Rump concolourous with tail [it's nice when they pose for you]

London Bridge

Those of you of a geological mindest may observe the variations in dip [and strike, for that matter] of the bedding planes in view. You may well wonder about foreshortening a little, and faulting a lot :)

Back in the streets

Green Alkanet

Blackbird FF
[that's carrying food / faecal sac, btw;
in other words, with hatched young!]

Blue Tit

"Put that camera down and give me some more worms!"

Coal Tit

Candyfloss onna stick
Long-tailed Tit

Leopard Slug!


Those - 96 by my count - were heading north, cutting across the peninsula. Not often you get northbound 'pig hordes [or indeed many of them, they usually pass inland of the Patch.]

English Scurvygrass

Greater Stitchwort

Portland Spurge 
[leaves obovate with mucro]

What a lovely melange, there.

Probably going to be quite a lot more like this coming, but I do still have some stuff from the Olde Dayes Ofe Yore Whene Wee Coulde Goe Oute..  [Ahem.] to come. Eventually!

Be Seeing You...

24 March, 2020

Buses.. They're Like Buses..!

So, in another life, a long long time ago - or so it seems - I'd booked some time off. Nice long weekend over the equinox and all that.

[Insert the expletive-dotted statement of resolute determination of your choice here, folks]

Yes, wonderful timing, I'm still amazed at myself....

But anyway;
Ultra violet insolation, fresh air, handy breezes, social distancing in the kilometres [I hoped] not metres, etc. etc.

Yeah, so I - being also still recovering from that displaced rib - did not go to Wild Tor like I had intended, but instead settled for a repeat of one of my last Moor walks. I went from the Cherrybridge, about Bellever, up Laughter Tor, and sat there looking at a nice lee slope in the hope a helpful Hen Harrier or Short-eared Owl would come cruising by. Ideally nice and slow at a good range and sun angle for photos.

Can you see it coming?

I didn't, damn thing went right over the top of me - serves me right for being tucked in and inconspicuous - and I only caught the movement out the corner of my eye as it banked in the wind before vanishing over towards the Dart [west, that is]. View yes, time to even get hand on camera? No chance.
What was it?

Fricking ringtail!!!

For. F[BLEEEP!]. Sake.

[[I'm laughing helplessly, not complaining in any way, btw.    Ok, maybe the teeniest bit of 'oh come on..', but definitely ironic]]

Thus it is that you'll have to settle for the showiest raptor of the day, which came tarting about into the wind - much higher up - after I'd moved on, past the Laughing Man, up and over Bellever Tor, and around the south side.

Oh yes, fancy raptors are like frickin' buses;

Red Kite!

Apart from being dead up-Sun, it was glorious..



How many silhouettes do you want

Oh yeah...

Floating red porn...


Compare local adult beating up young pretender [below]


Extra territorial Buzzards weren't as showy. :)
Even this one, which made a very precarious pose in order to try to distract me from the incoming kite [which went right over it and it uttered not a squawk!]


Right, a little scenic scenery..


not just uniform conifers

A little archaeology

Bellever and assorted tors from
Laughter Tor

Looking the other way

Friendly Flying Thing

No, not a biting midge. These are the little blighters who are so keen on bathing in your drinks..

Very purdy!

Couple of these landed on my knee and waved their wings a bit...

Spot the Stonechat

Her male was singing - and moving about - the whole time I was sat at Laughter, though he shut up for a whole 7 minutes when the harrier came through!

Let's move on and look at something else;

The Laughing Man

Not an official name, but as there is none [other than 'standing stone'] I'm giving it one! :P

Also, he's at an angle to the double row leading up to him, so clearly a stone with a sense of humour.

Looking up the row
[Laughing Man on the horizon]

Someone's been busy with the mower. Unfortunately, someone else had been busy, too and most of the row is awol. I suspect a large stone wall which crosses the line of the row may not be guiltless; a pair of nearby gateposts might be the other end terminals, for example.

Not sure what this is

Because you've gotta have fun, guy.  [[Groooooan]]


Yeah, so.. I'll, er..

Be Seeing You...