Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Common Carders still Active

When the sun isn't looking like it's about to turn red giant and devour the earth as a cloud of dust threatens to clog the lungs out of bodies, insect life is still around.

Thanks to the late blooming lavender on the library gardens, a few honeybees but particularly common carder bumbles are still feeding off the flowers. They move fast and don't settle much, so are hard to photograph, but I managed to snap a couple of them yesterday and it was most gratifying.

They must enjoy having their golden furry coats, because they are among the earliest bumbles you see in the spring, and definitely the latest still active in autumn. The colours of the carders has been glorious this year, some of them are so orange as to actually look like little furry oranges.

Oranges that fly.

Red admirals are still on the wing, but not seeing any hoverflies now. The dark times of the year are now upon us, where things go to sleep one by one rather than wake up.

January, and the cycle will repeat, and I can't wait.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 17.10.17

Monday, 16 October 2017

The Ophelia Sun

Well, did we ever have such an odd sort of day today.

I noticed as soon as I was out of the house mid morning that there was something not right with the sky, but initially I thought it was just a weirdly hazy morning, with perhaps some sugar factory or power station smog just giving it a bit of an orange tinge.

After that, I wasn't too surprised to see that the sun was a very sunset colour even at 1130am, so striking I took pictures of it above the market place and Asda. But it was only when I looked online on my phone to see that my Instagram feed was full of pictures of what looked like a bloody peach hanging in the sky that I caught on that there was something going on more than a bit of local smog.

Apparently it was Saharan dust dragged up by Hurricane Ophelia causing these strange skies - ironically a chapter in the Arthur C. Clarke "Mysterious World" book I had just been reading - although as the day went on and the number of pictures EVERYWHERE increased, Portugese wildfire ash had been added into the mix.

The sky went really dark at about 230pm, a sickly salmon pink colour, and the sun was obscured. But as I went running at 3pm I noticed that the sun had come back out, and you could see a blue band in the south west where the dust cloud ended.

Gradually, the apocalypse cloud passed over, and I recorded it on my phone, to be replaced by cloudless blue skies.

Radio 6 listeners too had been tracking it across the country; Radcliffe and Maconie were even more entertaining than usual!

How glad I was to have been part of a such a phenomenon!


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 17.10.17

Sun Shots

Another lovely day today, but I felt a bit useless because 1) I fell asleep while watching "The Force Awakens" on my sofa for two hours and 2) I cooked too much for my tea.

I did have a couple of nice walks to the park, going a different way each time, and enjoyed a cup of tea each time. Small pleasures! I really don't know why people drink coffee, it has no refreshing qualities whatsoever.

In the afternoon the sun burnt all the clouds out of the sky, and my second walk was into bright sunshine. Some good views to be had, the river glittered and the horses stood haloed in their shelterless field.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 15.10.17

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Autumn Colours in a Nutshell

Or rather in the local gardens to me. Spotted it fluttering down from the cotoneasters, and hoped it would settle long enough for me to get a pic.

It did, but not for any longer, and that was after having to do some daft gyrations to avoid casting my shadow across it as I approached from 15 metres away in a low sun casting a shadow like a striding giant.

I was getting some strange looks I can tell you. Unavoidable when you are a nature spotter sometimes. It's beena glorious day, so I didn't care.


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 14.10.17

Friday, 13 October 2017

Shots of the Lowering Sun

Our work buildings are not terribly pretty places, but I'm rather proud of the campus that surrounds them. There are a variety of nature habitats; grassland, trees, waterside, and cultivated garden areas.

When the sun is fed up of being over the yard arm and is making his way to bed, it sets over the south western end of the campus, and creates beautiful light over the grounds.

If you are lucky, this is the time that barn owls hunt.

I am trying to make the rest of workplace realise how special it could be. It is getting there, but slowly.


Wednesday, 11 October 2017

A Touch of Classy Interior

So, around on my travels recently - not today, I have been landlocked at work until the rain began at hometime - I came across a nice old car, a Singer Hunter, with a nice figurehead and glorious wooden interior, full of interesting looking knobs and switches.

It was sat outside the old Triple 3 garage, which when I was a child I thought meant that you could only have 3 cars in it at once so it wouldn't be much good for making money.

Perhaps they felt the same, because sometimes you can buy potted plants there in case you want to bring a green touch to your freshly MOT'd Toyota Yaris.

Diversification is where it's at!

Great car too.


Monday, 9 October 2017

A Flower for my 45th

So yes I'm another year older, certainly no wiser about anything, but a lot lazier. I've done nothing today other than have a couple of gentle walks around town seeing if there was anything I wanted to buy myself.

There wasn't so much as a sausage. Actually, if I'd seen a nice sausage I might have bought one, but there wasn't even that.

When you want to buy yourself something, you never actually do.

Any good ideas for £20 worth of something for an outdoorsy type to buy himself other than a new waterproof running jacket. I also have love to shop vouchers, Argos has a camping mat, but the sleeping bags have terrible reviews.

Either that or I'll just buy myself a large bottle of rum.

Really, have done nothing today, it hasn't been special, and it won't be until midnight either!


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 09.10.17