Half-Penny: a woodland ablaze

Half-Penny: a woodland ablaze

Upon my latest visit to Half-Penny, it was not that birds that, as usual, occupied my undivided attention. Despite both the local Kingfishers and Dippers performing admirably. Nor was it the sites mammalian inhabitants, despite a Red Squirrel putting on a mighty fine show as it collected hazelnuts from the riparian shrubbery. No, today it [...]

Half-Penny: how things have changed

Half-Penny: how things have changed

To those familiar with this blog, you will know that I owe my passion for nature almost entirely to my Grandmother. The lady who first introduced me to the joys of a life outdoors and who, through no end of weekend adventures, provided my first insight into the world of trees, birds, bugs and bees. [...]

Half-Penny: signs of the seasons

Half-Penny: signs of the seasons

Traversing the sunny (yet surprisingly cold) depths of Half-Penny this morning, one thing struck me above all else: the bounty of Autumnal fruit. This year, each and every fruit-bearing shrub appears laden with berries, much more so that usual. The stand of Blackthorn that grows, spindly and unkempt, by the entrance to the wood abounds [...]

Half-Penny: aliens and interlopers

Half-Penny: aliens and interlopers

There are many words used to describe species which, through human intervention, have found themselves existing far outside of their historic, natural range. Terms such as invasives, aliens, invasive aliens and nonindigenous species are quite familiar; while a glance at social media often reveals myriad more unflattering phrases: pest, nuisance, menace, vermin - I particularly loathe [...]

BBC Wildlife Blogger of the Week

BBC Wildlife Blogger of the Week

This week, I was kindly awarded the honour of Blogger of the Week by BBC Wildlife Magazine for my recent piece regarding my local patch: the Half-Penny Wood. This is the second time I have been lucky enough to be featured by the publication - the last being back in 2015 - and I really [...]

Half-Penny: by the riverside

Half-Penny: by the riverside

Today I thought I would try something different and, forgoing the urge to travel in search of nature, opted for a more relaxed approach to observation. Choosing to simply sit, watch and wait in a setting that, more so than any other, has enthused me since childhood: the Half-Penny Wood. It was the river which held [...]

The Waiting Game

The Waiting Game

Sometimes it is nice to just sit still; to abandon the urge to chase nature and allow wildlife to come to you. To wait; a moss-clad boulder, park bench, bank or fallen branch the ideal perch from which to watch the natural world go by, and from which to admire the myriad secretive creatures set [...]