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the HALL of EINAR

Pseudoboletus parasiticus - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Fungus upon fungus

As soon as you begin to look at the natural world there are never-ending chains of relationships between living organisms. The classic …

Mr Punch - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Mr Punch

It’s Mr Punch on the rocks on Westray.

Barquentine Thalassa - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Barquentine Thalassa

The Northlink Ferry from Scrabster on the Scotland mainland to Stromness on the Orkney Mainland is always entertaining, thankfully in a good …

Raptorous - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The magic of a Merlin

At the very north of Westray the coast is exposed. In the far distance I can see a falcon. It’s so far …

Twite - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Twite

There are small brown birds on the lichen-covered rocks on the coast of Westray. It takes me a while to identify them. …

Redshank - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Redshanks

Redshanks must be one of the most annoying birds for British birdwatchers. They are beautiful, active, entertaining to watch and have great …

Puffin - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Puffins on the rocks

It’s good to enjoy the Puffins while we can. They are critically endangered. They are ‘red listed’ which means they are at …

Bronze Age Bollards - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

A load of Bronze Age bollards

The Links of Notland is such an amazing place for archaeology. It has a huge neolithic settlement, site of the discovery of …

Compass Jellyfish - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Compass Jellyfish

I’ve been very lucky with jellyfish this summer on Westray. The jellyfish haven’t been quite so lucky. This looks like a Compass …

Flying Fulmar - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The Fulmar Triathlon

Fulmars are one of my favourite birds. All animals have some sort of compromise in their bodies because of the range of …

Sea Rocket - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Sea Rocket

Sea Rocket covers the top of many beaches on Westray. Cakile maritima has either white or a pinky-lilac shade of flowers. Here’s …

Orkney Door Handle - the Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Orkney door handle

In Orkney wood rots and metal rusts. Door handles fall off. A piece of twine through a hole though? A piece of …

Sand Martin - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Sand Martins

The Sand Martins are teetering on the edge of leaving Westray now. Their chicks must be fully grown and there are only …

Juvenile Gannet - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Gertrude Tanglewing

It’s been a very blustery day, it’s nearly dark and I’m just settling down for the evening when there’s an urgent message …

Pot boiler - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

A pot boiler

Imagine you have no technology other than fire, stone, wood and bone. How would you cook food, other than directly by roasting …

Grass Roots - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Tangled roots

Grass looks so unremarkable and is so ever-present in Orkney that it takes something special to shock me into considering it from …

Greylag Geese - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Greylag Geese

Greylag Geese are all over Westray at the moment because the farmers have created the perfect habitat for them: acres and acres of fresh green grass. It must be like waking up and seeing delicious breakfast as far as your eyes can see.

Rainbow Wave - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Rainbow waves

At the north end of Westray the Atlantic is unrestrained and waves crash into the coast making blowholes, sea caves and spectacular …

Puffin - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

I’m Shy!

The critically endangered Atlantic Puffin, Fratercula arctica. Climate change leading to lack of Sand Eels and marine pollution are the likely causes …

Baggage Check-In - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

One day all airports should be like this

Baggage check-in on Westray is not an arduous affair. Having said that, the flight to Papa Westray takes just two minutes, so ten minutes before your flight is still completely out of proportion.

Sanderling - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Sanderling in the mud

Sanderling. It sounds like it could be a verb as well as a noun. If it’s a verb, then these Sanderlings are …

Blackening Waxcap on the A9 - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

As rare as Witches’ Hats

On the endless A9 as I travel north from Devon to Orkney the lay-by numbers help denote the passing of a day …

Puffin Love - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Puffin love

Puffins mate for life and meet up again every year to have their one egg and baby puffling. Can you tell?

The North Sea - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The North Sea

The North Sea is magnificent. It’s been the victim of overfishing, suffered from industrial and agricultural runoff, dredging, and dumping of waste. …