Weather, Predation and Swallow Season 2014

This week I completed a task I’ve been putting off for a while – totalling up the results for the 2014 swallow season at Cardiff Riding School. This season will go down in personal history for two reasons. Firstly, although it was my 9th season studying this population it was my first as an MPhil…

Lihou Island, a quick tour

I like exploring islands and during a week’s holiday to Guernsey with my girlfriend I had the opportunity to explore more! On our first day we found ourselves overlooking a small island off Guernsey’s west coast. As I constantly repeated how much I’d like to go to this little rock, like a petulant child, Alex…

Migration Through Flat Holm

Recently I found myself once again speeding towards Flat Holm Island for a weekend of bird ringing. Unlike the last visits, we were not after gull chicks but targeting the islands smaller birds. Landing on the island late afternoon, the first thing that struck me was the noise, or more precisely the lack of it.…

Spot the Flycatcher

At this time of year, birds that have made the UK their home during the summer are packing their proverbial bags for the journey south. Over at Cardiff Riding School the “resident” swallows are joined by others of their kind but at this time of year it is the species visiting the paddocks that begin to interest…

The Gulls of Flat Holm Island

Lying a mere 8km south of Cardiff, more or less in the middle of the Severn Estuary, Flat Holm just doesn’t receive the attention of other Welsh islands such as Skomer, Skokoholm, and Bardsey. This is a shame as its more urban setting gives it a uniqueness compared to the others. Despite being close to the Capital, the 32ha island…