On the first bright autumnal day in September we packed a picnic lunch and walked to Fleswick Bay. (Please click the link to see an earlier post.) The path up St Bees Head and onward towards Whitehaven was fairly busy with holiday-makers and a few local people. It was a calm day with the tide going out.
I have selected a few of the snaps I took. The slideshow begins with the Cumbrian mountains in the distance. The best opening remark (from a stranger we met) must surely be, ‘Have you saved some of the beauty for us?’
We had not equipped ourselves for litter-picking and had to leave the few plastic bottles we noticed. We could not resist removing a balloon, which was still inflated and bore the words ‘Grandpa Ned’. Balloons are a particular risk to wildlife and farm animals. It is a pity that releasing them is a popular way of celebrating or commemorating loved ones. Planting a tree or sponsoring a nature project is longer-lasting and beneficial.
The coastline (known as the Colourful coast) is managed by the National Trust and Cumbria County Council. There is also a nature reserve for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB).
Now the days are becoming shorter there is a smaller window of time for a daylight evening walk. The evening I took these photos the weather forecast gave 7:45 as the time for the sun to set locally. The photos in this post were taken between 7:34 and 7:40. The first was taken from a low vantage point, the others as we climbed and walked away from the sunset. (I kept turning round to check the view!)
In low light the colours are less true to life.
A few years ago hubby built two bird boxes with entrances designed to fit different birds – a robin and a blue tit.
The box for the robin featured here when I wrote about a wasps’ nest (or bike). That is the only use the box has seen in its current location. At first it was lower on the garage wall and a field mouse possibly used it.
The blue tits’ box has provided night-time accommodation for one bird at a time during a number of winters. It has never been used by a nesting pair.
This year the wasps used the blue tits’ box. They do not return to the site of a previous nest, but this was very close. After all the wasps’ activity had ceased, hubby dismantled the box.
View into bird box with wasps’ bike
Nest box with wasps’ bike
Entrance to wasps’ bike
We had been able to see the nest through the entrance, and the wasps entering and leaving. The entrance to their nest was at the bottom, so they had to make their way around the outside to reach it.
By the time we examined it the papery construction had become food for woodlice.
The clean nest boxes are now ready for their next residents. For completeness I really should mention the snails, which climb high ahead of rainy weather and have been seen under or even inside one of the boxes.