Friday, 18 June 2010

Bits and bobs!

Sometimes I take some photos but they don't seem to hang together for a proper blog post, so here are some I took earlier in the year, mostly May and June I think. On a days birding around the Somerset Levels, I was very lucky to come across this Adder slithering across the path in front of me at Ashcott Corner.
We have only three snakes in Britain and the Adder is the only venomous one. This one was about 30 inches long from memory and I was thrilled to see it.
A great success story for the Somerset Levels is the explosion of breeding Bitterns on the various reserves there (I think there are possibly 14 booming males this year). Just a couple of years ago, I would consider myself very lucky to get to see one Bittern. Last year and this, it is not uncommon to have several flight views during a mornings walk! It really is a treat!
Another area I like to go walking is just south of where I live on the borders of Somerset and Wiltshire. It's a totally different habitat from the flat but characterful Levels. It's right on the western edge of Salisbury Plain with rolling chalk hills and a great sense of space. Corn Buntings breed here, but are right on the western edge of their breeding range and don't quite make it into Somerset. These dumpy looking birds have a lovely tinkling song, somewhat like a bunch of keys rattling.
Another wonderful character of this habitat is the Brown Hare. They're quite skittish for the most part and this was the closest I got to this one poking it's ears up in the middle of a grassy field.
I was chuffed to find this field of Linseed (Flax). I'm definitely not a fan of oil seed rape, but I guess it makes a startling contrast with the lovely soft blue of the Linseed here.

The Hawthorne flower has been good this year which means we should get a good crop of red haws in the autumn (great for our winter thrushes, but I don't want to think about that right now!) (-:
The last area in this post is a bird club trip to Exmoor which is about 2 hours west of me, nearly into the county of Devon. Like the ponies in the New Forest that I posted about earlier in the year, Exmoor ponies are free to roam throughout the Exmoor National Park.
They are hardly tame or confiding and so this shot of a young one was taken at a distance and is cropped quite a lot!
Whereas this lamb was quite happy to pose just a few feet from me, looking very content in the shade. Mind you I didn't hang around as the mother was keeping a good eye on me!

9 comments:

Chris said...

Beautiful post Jen, but i would not have been able to make the snake shots... I just hate them and am damned afraid of them!!! But you got a nice picture of it and I love your landscape pictures too!

Dog Trot Farm said...

Jenny, the new header photo is just lovely. I am not a fan of snakes, spiders or anything "creepy crawley" now cousin Eve on the other hand.....

Eve said...

This is just a lovely post Jenny Wren! That snake is a winner but I had no clue you had a venomous snake there abouts!!! Beautiful scenery! Just beautiful!

Mary said...

You only have three kinds of snakes? Great shot, but if it is poisonous, I don't know if I would have been thrilled to sse or not....but I'm sure I would have taken a photo! That field of blue is just gorgeous! Wow...what a lot of blue flowers. Makes a great header, too. Love the young pony and sheep!

Rural Rambler said...

Uh I don't know about the Adder Jen but the fields of blue and gold are stunning. Love the Exmoor ponies and the little foal is so sweet. He is having a bad mane day! The Corn Buntings song would be fun to hear!

Quiet Paths said...

I love your bits and bobs. That flax and hills photo is stunning, Jenny! You should print it out. Lovely shots all around.

Shelley said...

You're a brave lady Jenny to stick around and take photos of that snake! I would've been running and creating quite a ruckus - lol! I'd rather be hugging that sweet lamb you photographed! Also loved that field of blue flowers...looks like a Monet painting...so pretty.

Roy said...

Beautiful Linseed images Jen and the lamb and a great shot of the Bittern.
Wish I could say the same about the Adder. They just don't do it for me, well not anything I could talk about anyway.{:)

姿吟姿吟 said...

河水永遠是相同的,可是每一剎那又都是新的。......................................................................