The new wildlife walk reconnoitred last week proved a great success. Parties were split into five, each group given material & equipment to identify particular elements of the walk – animals, birds, bugs & plants – the last group recording data and taking digital photographs. Neither too serious nor scientific, the aim to open eyes and minds to the richness of the countryside experienced by naming and therefore properly seeing the natural world. 370 digital images take while to sort through but convey a kids’ view of the experience as well as providing some material that, with a little editing, gives good quality images. Of the whole group of over 40 ten year olds, no special attention was required to maintain interest, though there were some tears when someone was stung reaching deep into a burrow to estimate its length. The Brown Hare previously described repeated its performance each morning, sitting tight in a rush clump, allowing approach to within a few paces before loping off, stopping at the bank top to gather itself before moving away and gathering speed, long ears high above the rushes.
On the sea, fishing improves as water warms and fish follow the rising tide inundating boulders and rock-pools and all the life they contain. Parties of Bass chase fry along the surface or disturb the regular wavelet pattern by their swimming, more often first felt as a thump followed by forceful tugging before drawn to net, pale belly twisting under grey-bronze back beneath the waves. Yesterday, wading waist deep at the estuary mouth, a long silver rocket shot vertically from the sea, way beyond casting distance yet still above mast height of yachts in the bay; sea trout or salmon patrolling the shore awaiting the taste of river spate to fight its way up to spawn.
Wildlife Wales Activities: www.wildlife-wales.co.uk