Tag: nature

June 2018. The sounds of water in the Cairngorms.

In her magnificent book, The Living Mountain, Nan Shepherd describes the contribution of water in its many forms to the unique character of the Cairngorms.   She celebrates its ever-presence in the landscape, and the various ways we experience it through all of our own senses. “On one short stretch of burn the ear may ...

09/06/18. Young Long Eared Owls. Dalmunzie Castle hotel estate. Glenshee, Cairngorm National Park.

I left my recorder and microphones on a ridge overlooking a small cluster of pine trees to capture the “squeaky gate” call of the young long eared owls. This short extract was from about 11:00pm; it was not yet dark, but the sun was down. The calls are from the young to their parents. They ...

20/05/18. Irish Ferry passes Skokholm.

One morning I went down to South Bay to try contact microphones on the rusted remains of the metal capstan on the dock; at least, I think that’s what it is!  There was a deep rumbling.  And it was just as intense if I put the microphones directly on the concrete of the dock itself.  ...

12/06/18. Garden Tiger Moths eating Hawkbit; Barpa Langais, North Uist.

Beautiful woolly, hairy moth caterpillars in large numbers to be found on the grounds of the Barpa Langais (ancient burial mound at Langass, near Lochmaddy).   I had been recording the sound from a nearby fence when I saw these caterpillars at my feet, voraciously consuming hawkbit leaves.  The yellow hawkbit flowers look a little ...

12/9/18. Corn Crake. Aird a’ Mhachair, North Uist.

Machair is the name of a unique coastal landscape found mainly on the northwest coasts of the British Isles.   Some of the best areas for this are in Uist, off the Northwest coast of the Scottish mainland.  Machair consists of sandy soil formed of crushed seashells and lies between and among the sand dunes ...

17/05/18 – 18/05/18. Skokholm: Storm Petrels II (3 recordings).

The next evening, 18/5/18, I went out later to two different locations along another wall near the cottage and by the Northern Plain.   It was between 23:00 and 00:15, and so covered the period from almost dark, to dark.  This time I found at least 2 birds singing away, but in slightly different ways, ...

17/05/18-18/05/18. Skokholm: Storm Petrels I

Skokholm has beautiful geologic features; the dominant feature being red (raspberry coloured) sandstone.  This sandstone seems quite hard; it doesn’t weather into a smooth surface; instead it forms into shards.  These formations occur in massive scale along the coastline, and then also fracture over time into large, medium and smaller fragments.   Massive or small, ...