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Matera

Pigeon in Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Precision

Just how precise is this feral Pigeon with its tiny twig? I’m not sure it’s going to be that much use as …

Italian Wall Lizard - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Ruined

Ruin Lizards. No, that’s not an instruction. Ruins are where these Italian Wall Lizards live. In Italy there are civilisations’ worth of …

Forester Moth - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Forester

There’s a bright blue iridescent moth flying in the middle of the day in the south of Italy. I have no idea …

Bertolini's Bee Orchid - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Bertoloni’s Bee Orchid

It was such a thrill to see Bee Orchids in South Devon: Here in Matera I can see a familiar shape but …

Mediterranean Spotted Chafers - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Spotting chafers

We’re walking in the heat through pungent herbs, surrounded by butterflies and day-flying moths with Lesser Kestrels overhead. We’re in Matera in …

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

Longhorn on the Giant Fennel

Out in the countryside in Matera in Italy, the dry heat and the scent of herbs surrounds us. I particularly love the …

Thomisus on flower - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Spiderbombing

I don’t know how long photobombing has been ‘a thing’. Spoiling someone’s photograph by appearing in it unexpectedly must have appeared very …

Lesser Kestrel - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The Lesser Kestrels of Matera #9

There are Lesser Kestrels before breakfast, Lesser Kestrels on the way to breakfast, a break from Lesser Kestrels for breakfast and then Lesser Kestrels after breakfast. In Matera, there are Lesser Kestrels everywhere.

Lesser Kestrel - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The Lesser Kestrels of Matera #8

It’s five o’clock in the morning and she’s calling immediately outside our window. I think she wants her mate. The tone is …

Lesser Kestrel - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The Lesser Kestrels of Matera #7

We’re having close encounters of the wildlife kind: There are Lesser Kestrels all over Matera. I’m sure the locals must become immune …

Mediterranean Spotted Chafer - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Mediterranean Spotted Chafer

It’s taken me a while to identify this beetle I saw in Italy this summer. It really shouldn’t have taken me this …

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

Surrounded by Giant Fennel

We are out in the nature reserve which occupies the opposite side of the gorge on which the ancient city of Matera …

Lesser Kestrel - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The meaning of Sickle

The word falco, from falcon, means sickle. We’re watching Lesser Kestrels hunting in the fields outside Matera. It’s a breathtaking spot: Across …

Trichodes apiarius - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The Bee-Eating Beetle

That’s bright! It’s got bright red and black striped warning colouration. It’s the Bee-Eating Beetle, Trichodes apiarius, named by Linnaeus in 1758. …

Lesser Kestrel - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Grillaio in Matera

The Lesser Kestrel is such a disappointing English name for such a fantastic bird. The Italians call them Grillaio, after their main …

Lesser Emporer Dragonfly - Matera - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

The Lesser Emperor of Matera

We’re in Matera in the south of Italy. It’s one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities on Earth, with palaeolithic caves on …