Sunday, 8 November 2009

Old Town churchyard, St Mary's

Old Town church sits just above and overlooks Old Town Bay. It is a very small and old church with a delightfully rambling churchyard. In the past it has been a good area of St Mary's for birding. It's old Sycamore trees attracting amongst other things, Firecrests and Yellow-browed Warblers. I didn't find either of those birds (despite ALOT of looking). I did find opportunities for some photography though..... This church notice was funny, click to enlarge and read the last paragraph. (-:
It was lovely to sit in the sun on these steps for a while and take in the peace and quiet.
Wandering amongst the gravestones, there were many showing the harsh difficult times from living on these islands in the past. There were many lives lost at sea, both very young and old. Below is one that was still quite legible.This deep red succulent was thriving in the churchyard. I know this plant begins with the letter O, but can't recall its name. Any ideas?Beautiful with the sun shining through it.Where I live in the relatively mild south west of England, this plant would still be unlikely to survive the winter without protection. Here, it grows like a weed.One plant the churchyard had in abundance was ivy and the flowers were humming with life. Bees, flies and butterflies were taking advantage of this late nectar source. This Small Copper was taking a break and basking in the sunshine.A Speckled Wood trying to blend in with the leaf litter.And a Red Admiral from various angles. It covered this flower pretty comprehensively.

One bird that is in big trouble on the mainland, but that seems to be doing very well on the Scillies, it the Song Thrush. Apart from doing well here, they also tend to be quite tame, allowing the photographer some close ups.Still a bit more to come from the Isle of Scilly in my next post.


Eve said...

This place is so beautiful and tropical looking Jenny. I love the succulent! The butterfly pictures are wonderful and the Song Thrush is so nice to pose! Great photos. You did such a great job over there!

Mary said...

Teriffic place to wander around. I love looking at old graveyards. The tombs and monuments here look so old and so tall. Love the shot with the church in the background. Beautiful butterflies! Ours are pretty much gone everywhere I go now. Love the thrush. Maybe he does well there because it is secluded and less civilized.

Kelly said...

...what a beautiful graveyard! I wonder when the church was built and how old the oldest grave is, and yes, that is a funny sign--church being canceled because of high tide. Life is different on small islands! Beautiful captures of the butterflies. I love just a couple hours away from Mary, and our butterflies have pretty much disappeared for the winter too. Your thrush looks a lot like ours. Does he have that magical, ethereal call. I love listening to the thrushes on summer evenings in the shadows along the Little Miami River.

Jenny said...

Hi Evie, yes it does have a bit of a tropical feel to it. I'd love to be there when alot more of the flowers were out!

Hi Mary, yes the churchyard has a lovely old feel to it, yet alot of the graves are still tended. I think you're right about the reason for the Song Thrush thriving there.

Hi Kelly, I looked it up and the present church was built in the early 1800's, but it was built on the remains of another church, so I'm not sure what the age of the earliest gravestone would be. I love the sound of your USA Thrushes too, but ours sounds a bit more like your Brown Thrasher, repeating notes though not as harsh I think.

Rural Rambler said...

Jenny the churchyard is beautiful and the headstones and monuments are just a wonder to look at, such character in those stones. I agree with the others that love old graveyards. We have quite a few here and I enjoy stopping and just walking around.

Before I enlarged the parish schedule I thought it said 'ticks' instead of tides and I was all what the heck?!

Anonymous said...

Lovely Thrush images Jen.
The Succulent, "Aeonium Urbicum Rubrum" (Red Salad Bowl).

See, I do pay attention sometimes.{:) Well thats the name I found on the net against a plant that looks like it anyway.

Quiet Paths said...

Isn't it amazing what that warm sea air will do to a landscape! Such beauty abounds. I'm glad to know the Thrush has a place still on the islands.

Chris said...

Hi Jenny,
Well it is a pleasure for us to discover this area in your company. You are a wonderful guide and a talented photograph! Thanks for sharing this experience with us!

Jenny said...

Hi Pix, I'm sure you'd have loved looking round this churchyard. You made me laugh with your ticks comment! (-:

Hey Roy, many thanks for that name! Well, I guess it does have an O in the name,but I was miles off getting it right! (-:

Hi Christine, yes, in fact, if Britain didn't get influenced by the gulf stream, then we'd be an awful lot colder here!

Hi Chris, many thanks for your kind comments. There are only a couple more posts from Scilly to go. I need to get out soon for some posts for after these Scilly ones!