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Diadem Spider - Bovey Heath - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Diadem Spider

I’m at Bovey Heathfield. It’s not quite Dartmoor and the heath is a lowland heath. There are plenty of spiders blocking the …

You’re Next

I’ve collaborated with the musician John Bentley to create this video for his song ‘You’re Next’. It’s a song-list of extinct species, …

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

Shaggy Parasols at Emsworthy Mire

There are Parasol mushrooms in the fields at Emsworthy Mire. They are huge, but not as huge as the dinner-plate sized Macrolepiota …

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

Lone Trees on Dartmoor

A walk from Emsworthy Mire. Dartmoor is an impressive landscape of human destruction. It’s been cut and burnt and grazed. And thousands …

Ring Ouzel - Emsworthy Mire - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Ring Ouzels at Emsworthy Mire

I’ve heard there are Ring Ouzels at Emsworthy Mire. Ring Ouzels are thrushes which nest on high moors and upland crags in …

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

Waxcaps on the wane

We’re on a trip to north Devon, near Lynmouth, on an organised fungus foray. I’m particularly excited about the grassland here as …

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

Beeches on the turn

Trees have hormones just like people. As the length of days shorten, so leaves produce less of a hormone called auxin. That …

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

Porcelain fungus

I stop the car in a small valley on Dartmoor. There’s an enormous fallen Beech tree and it’s covered with fungi. Glistening …

Sunset - Bovey Heath - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Sunset at Bovey Heathfield

I’ve finally managed to have a trip out to Bovey Heath. It’s a tiny remnant of the heathland which would have covered …

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

Bridford Wood

Bridford Wood is almost empty. It’s raining and only a few intrepid dog walkers are emptying their dogs along the River Teign. …

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

Horse Chestnuts

There’s something of the Medieval torture instrument about conkers. There’s that casing which looks as if it should be attached to a …

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

Waxcaps

Waxcap fungi thrive on damp, ‘unimproved’ grassland, or rather grassland which hasn’t be ruined by artificial fertiliser or herbicides. A trip to …

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

Challacombe Farm

Challacombe Farm is on Dartmoor. It’s part of the 135,000 acres owned by the Duchy of Cornwall to the benefit of Charles …

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

Dusky Puffballs at Emsworthy Mire

There’s time for a quick trip to Emsworthy Mire on Dartmoor and I’m delighted with the Dusky Puffballs there. Their scientific name …

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

Challacombe Farm

Being delicious to humans has been one of the most successful evolutionary strategies of recent times. Farm animals now outweigh wild ones, …

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

Castanea

I’m walking through the woods when I see Chestnut leaves. There’s also a fresh empty burr. Where did the chestnuts go? Here …

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

Brown Birch Boletes on Yarner Heath

While I’m searching for Parasitic Boletes I stumble across a Brown Birch Bolete. They’re lovely mushrooms. They have scaly stalks, small tubes …

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

Carrion Carry On

There’s a Carrion Crown on the handrail of the small bridge across the canal. It’s a dark, iridescent blue against the dense …

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

Devil’s Snuffbox

There are Puffballs in the woods. It’s that time of year. These look like the Common Puffball, Lycoperdon perlatum. They are covered …

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

Beech, Alder and Chestnut

There are nuts and seeds and cones aplenty in the woods at this time of year. There are Beech nuts on the …

Grey Seal - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey

Have you seen a male Grey Seal?

The Grey Seals around Orkney are a classic combination of curious and wary. They are alternately fascinated by me and worried by …

Wheatear - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey

Wheatear

I’m flushing Wheaters with every walk and drive on Westray. There isn’t a path or a road which doesn’t have a wary …

Sanderling - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey

Sanderling #4

The Sanderlings of summer on Westray were a joy to get close to. Lying on the beach, keeping still, and watching them …

Sunset Westray - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey

Sunset over the waves

It’s sunset on Westray and I’ve abandoned the car on the grass and marched off to the sea. It’s magnificent in this …