Cheltenham preview for Day 1

I’m off to Cheltenham tomorrow for the first of four days racing at the Cheltenham Festival. Despite the deluges of much of the winter the ground has been drying out, as it always does these days at Cheltenham, and the going will probably be just on the soft side of good.  But we’ll see how…

Oscar Dewhurst – Little Egret

Oscar writes: While in France last summer I spent a day at a nature reserve on the Somme Estuary. From one of the hides this Little Egret was fishing. It took a few attempts to get the right timing with the end, but eventually I got there. Nikon D300s, Nikon 600mm f4 AFS-II   Mark…

Saturday Cartoon by Ralph Underhill

  And this is a passage from Chapter 7 of ‘A Message from Martha‘: ‘If we continue laying waste to the diversity of life and the natural beauty of the planet then we are like vandals going through an art gallery with spray paint and Stanley knives. When we come out the other side, or…

Wuthering Moors 42

The scale of burning of English blanket bogs revealed by the latest RSPB work is scary. There are 127 separate consents (mostly through HLS agreements – ie we taxpayers are paying for it too) for burning on blanket bogs. These affect these seven  Special Areas of Conservation (SACs)(Border Mires, Kielder-Butterburn; Ingleborough Complex; Moor House –…

Blackcaps in my garden – and yours?

All records of Blackcap in my garden are winter records. Here they are: 2005   1 2006   0 2007   0 2008   0 2009   0 2010    6 2011    0 2012   0 2013   11 2014   2 The earliest records are 27 January and the latest 7 April (3 January records, 9 February records, 6 March records, 2 April…