I have taken a bit of a break from blogging this last week for a couple of reasons. Firstly the weather has been frankly atrocious and what sun there has been has coincided rather nicely with the hours that I am in work. Secondly I have been getting stuck into some more jobs that needed doing on the house that I have been overlooking with the arrival of longer days. Something tells me that this is going to be a battle that will only get harder as summer approaches.
One of my only trips out last week was a drive down to Bracelet Bay on Gower one evening to have a pick-nick. A rather strange thing to do I agree but I enjoyed it. I have been wanting to try and photograph Mumbles lighthouse in the dark for a while now but could never come up with a composition that I thought would work. This time though I just decided to get the camera out and see what I could produce. The results are I think pretty good. There is something nice about the contrast between the lighthouse, something we associate with times gone-by, and the modernity of Port Talbot steelworks in the background on the other side of Swansea Bay. I wish that there had been a bit more light available to highlight the lighthouse tower itself, but I doubt my other half would have been willing to trek over to provide the necessary illumination.
The only trip of the weekend was to Kenfig NNR on Saturday. The Black-Necked Grebe from last week was still on show but as ever had decided to stay on the most inaccessible part of the lake. The highlight was the large numbers of Willow Warblers and Chiffchaff that surrounded the lake. Almost every bush had a mixed flock of four or five birds and the air was once again alive with the sounds of Spring. I have never seen these birds in such a high density before so I presume this is the first place that they have made landfall and haven’t yet moved on due to the plentiful supply of food. The chorus around the lake was further added to by the calling of several Cetti’s Warbler (though yet again I didn’t see one) and a Water Rail somewhere within the reeds. The walk to Sker Point delivered a hunting Kestrel, male and female Stonechats and Reed Buntings as well as my first singing Skylarks of the year. The Meadow Pipits were trying to compete but their voices will just never be a match for that of the Skylark. The beach itself was relatively quiet bar a small flock of Golden Plovers that flew overhead, catching the sun nicely in the progress. Much to my disappointment the walk failed to deliver any Wheatears. Nevertheless I live in hope. My luck must change soon.