London’s Albertopolis

With the proceeds from the Great Exhibition in 1851, Albert, Prince Consort to Queen Victoria, guided the Royal Commission to purchase land in South Kensington on which were to be built the great cultural and educational establishments of Victorian London. As a result, in an area between the Cromwell Road…

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The Times They Are A Changin’

Following the Rolling Stones inspired title of my last post, Bob Dylan’s protest anthem provides the title for this one. I shall not commit myself to continuing the pattern but we shall see! The Bank Holiday Monday at the end of August and the beginning of September for me signal…

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You can’t always get what you want

So said the Rolling Stones and for birdwatching it is certainly true. This summer I have been teased by Kingfishers. I had the pleasure of seeing three or four on my canoe trip down the Thames and was even able to get a picture with my old Fuji digital. I…

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A visit to RSPB Fowlmere

A few days into my recent two week holiday I decided to make a late afternoon visit to RSPB Fowlmere. The weather was not promising. Rain threatened and the sky was heavy with cloud but that aside the reserve was as beautiful as ever. Crouching in the farmland in South…

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The Return of the Treecreeper

I say return, but I know they have been here all the time. That said I have now seen just four Treecreepers in 10 years in Barwick and two of those were yesterday. I saw my first not long after we moved here as it moved up the Ash tree…

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Anyone know a Coleopterist? – the puzzle solved

Update on my earlier post ‘Anyone know a Coleopterist‘. I saw the beetle in the garden again today and armed with the knowledge of spines on the tibiae as the key identifier I was able to identify it definitively as a Lesser Stag Beetle Dorcus parallelopipedus – it only had…

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Badger’s Eye Sunset

I recently bought a camouflage hood and gloves to aid my wildlife watching and a warm sunny evening last Wednesday provided the first opportunity to test out their invisibility properties. Checking the wind direction I decided my first stop would be the badger’s sett so I hooded up and entered…

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Two Men in a Canoe – Day 3

We awoke to bright sunshine in our secluded pitch at Longridge and enjoyed a cup of tea before packing up the tent and kit ready for our final day in the canoe. Our slightly leisurely place meant that the sky had clouded over by the time we paddled away but…

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