Tag Archives: wildlife

Abundance

It is late August and the morning is fierce with light. Westwards the Outer Isles are floating in a blue haze, their familiar shapes swollen yet indistinct. I am roaming the croft fields with a bag and a walking stick. … Continue reading

Posted in birds, crofting, encounters with wildlife, environment, experiencing nature, landscape, meadows, nature, Scotland, summer, wildflowers, wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Sinuosity

In April the land burned. Cold snow showers that had bundled together under cloud-bands of steel grey and ink in late March were swept aside by penetrating blue skies, fierce light and desiccating wind. The air was bright, dry and … Continue reading

Posted in birds, encounters with wildlife, environment, experiencing nature, landscape, landscape photography, mountains, nature, nature writing, orchids, skylarks, swallows, wildflowers#cuckoos | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Fire and fury (and cuckoos)

On Saturday morning a surprise landed on the lawn as I knelt gardening. A cuckoo, his livery as blue as the waters of the Inner Sound rippling with currents of platinum-grey and violet, his abdomen a striped T-shirt. His “Cu-ckoo” … Continue reading

Posted in environment, experiencing nature, landscape, landscape history, nature, peat bogs, Scotland, Uncategorized, wildfires, wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Winter blues and the magic of light

So much happens in midwinter, not just the mayhem of a family Christmas but out there, beyond the walls and windows, down by the shore, in the fields and in the woods. Apart from the preternatural (and for me much … Continue reading

Posted in birds, Christmas, clouds, coasts, encounters with wildlife, environment, experiencing nature, family, ice, landforms, landscape, landscape photography, midwinter, mountains, nature, nature writing, north winds, peatbogs, photography, Rainbows, Scotland, sea, Skye, snow, solstice, storm, Storms, thunder, Trotternish, weather, wilderness, wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Whale bones and wintry wilds

Snow appeared on our mountain tops with the back-turning of clocks, just as it usually does, so now days are constricted, confined at each end by swift sunrises and swifter sunsets. Each incremental diurnal shortening can almost be tasted. To … Continue reading

Posted in birds, bones, coasts, death, encounters with wildlife, environment, experiencing nature, landscape, nature, nature writing, otters, photography, Scotland, sea, Storms, Uncategorized, walking, weather, whales, wilderness, wildlife, wildlife encounters, winter, winter weather | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Limestone homecoming and olive trees

For a few years I took groups of university students to Mallorca. It was both a privilege and a pleasure; hard work but great fun. Through fieldwork we investigated the island’s mountain and coastal landscapes and tried to piece together … Continue reading

Posted in archaeology, beaches, Formentor, karst, limestone, Lluc, Mallorca, Mediterranean, Mediterranean holidays, Mediterranean vegetation, olive groves, olive trees, rillenkaren, Serra de Tramuntana, terraces, university teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Talks-walking, eye-blindings and wild spraintings

July is a month of flickering, in and out, up and down. Heat and searing light give way to cooler silvery days filled with midges and mists, the latter gently spreading diamonds on leaves and flowers, in and out, up … Continue reading

Posted in art, artists, encounters with wildlife, environment, experiencing nature, landscape, nature, nature writing, otters, photography, river, Scotland, sea, walking, wilderness, wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments