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Westray, Page 3

Notes on a very small island

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

Gannet missile technology

As I child I read a book called Magic of the Senses by Vitus B. Droscher, a popular science exploration of the …

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

Flying Wren

I’ve enjoyed the Wrens at Einar this year. They’ve been a joy. Their lives are led in a sheltered garden, full of …

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

Feather bed

The encyclopaedia says there are four seasons in temperate latitudes. Billy Connolly, however, said, “There are two seasons in Scotland; June and winter”. …

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

Absolute scenes

Absolute scenes here today at Einar as the Wrens fledged. I’ve been watching the parents bringing invertebrates into one of my ‘useful …

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

Pecked

This cobble has been tumbled by the waves until it is not quite smooth. It has been ‘pecked’ by crashing against other …

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

Kitchen drawer wildlife

Woodlice. There are 3,500 species in the world and between 35 and 40 in the UK. They’re animals which many children know. …

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

Puffin icon

It was a very Puffin Christmas here. I received a Puffin Icon from the Puffin Whisperer. She used a solid wooden block …

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

The tortoise and the hare

We’re watching a kayaker paddle across Pierowall Bay with his fishing rod safely stowed when a motorboat comes past. Which one would …

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

Slip

It’s hard to see that cliffs are dangerous from the top of them. Seeing the Island from the sea gives a completely …

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

Triple lintel

Orkney is full of the evidence of master builders. Once stone is placed upon stone, then something is created which can last …

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

Scottish Primroses

In August we went looking for the Scottish Primrose, Primula scotica. It’s one of the few plants which grows in Scotland and …

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

Life, clinging on

There was a solitary flower of what looked like Sea Mayweed on the rocks on the exposed coast of Westray this summer. …

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

Eyebright

In this time of darkness it’s pleasant to think back to the summer when, on glorious days, we would walk the coast …

Sunset over Tafts - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Sunset over Tafts

One of my favourite photographs from Orkney is Sunset over Tafts. It sums up the surprising drama of a landscape, which is …

Rock Pipit - Westray - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Rock Pipits

There’s a noisy young pipit on the rocks. It’s the perfect colour for these lichen covered rocks. It has a lovely delicate …

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

Curlew

It’s a warm evening, bathed in orange light. I hear the call first. Then it’s the flypast. It’s a Curlew. There’s been …

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

Wrens

There is a family of Wrens flitting along the field boundary in front of us. They’re working the margins for insects and …

Westray - The Hall of Einar

The pool

There’s a rock pool fed with fresh water fram a tiny waterfall on the west coast of Westray. I love how green …

Great Skuas and Kittiwake - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Escape?

After seeing a couple of successful attacks by Great Skuas against juvenile Kittiwakes I feared the worst when this one strayed over …

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

Atlantic Wave

I love walking the west coast of Westray. On a beautiful day there’s no place like it. I’ve been enjoying getting to …

Great Northern Diver - Westray - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Great Northern Diver

I had such a wonderful time last winter going to see Great Northern Divers in Brixham in Devon. I was able to …

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

A lone Swift at Noup Head

There’s a Swift at Noup Head on Westray. Swifts are called that for a reason. Can you see the fly it’s about …