© 2014 by Barbara Copperthwaite.

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Wet and wild!

Well, it may be a damp day that made both Scamp and me hesitate about setting foot outside, but that hasn’t made the birds hide away. Today’s been a fantastic day for bird spotting – and even better, the sun made a brief appearance…! Everywhere I looked I saw signs that spring was well under way now. A wild Parakeet gave a shrieking call overhead, flying across the park to meet its mate with a distinctive flash of vivid green. Highbury park in Birmingham is one of only two sites in the West Midlands where escaped Parakeets have successfully created a breeding colony, though are a several places in Greater London that can boast the exotic birds. I’ve been trying to get a decent photograph of

Nature awakening

The air was warm and the tiny hint of rain in the air that had misted my face every now and again had not long disappeared when I saw it: a tiny flutter of bright orange amongst the solid green of dense undergrowth. Was it just a dead leaf? No, it was my first Comma spot of the year! All excited, and with a big grin on my face, I pulled out my camera and got clicking away. I hope you like the shot I chose, which can be seen on the Comma page. This time of year, the native butterflies are just emerging from hibernation. Yes, some butterflies do live from one summer to the next. Our longest-living native butterfly (making it to around ten months old) is the Brimstone, which hibernates over win

Nesting Nuthatch

Wandering through Highbury Park, King's Heath, I spotted a Nuthatch disappearing into a hole halfway up a half rotten tree. Sure enough, it has started building a nest there, dashing in and out with small leaves, moss, and grass etc to make it cosy. Typically, it has also been busy creating a neat mud wall around the outside of the entrance, to make it smaller and create a slope (handy for excrement to roll down!) The Nuthatch is a common sight in deciduous woods and parklands of England and Wales, though it is a rare sight in Scotland. It feeds on insects, seeds and nuts. Originally it was known as 'nut hack', because of its habit of wedging a nut in a crevice in a tree, then hacking at i

The mouse-like Treecreeper

It's just a photo of a tree trunk, right...? Wrong! Look closely and you'll spot the cleverly camouflaged Treecreeper. A smallish bird (about 12.5cm or 5in) with mottled, streaked and spotted back and whitish underparts, the Treecreeper blends perfectly onto sun-dappled bark. Its only giveaway is when it moves - which it does in lightening spurts of speed, mouse-like. That's what caught my eye as I was walking with Scamp, just the merest flash of movement. The Treecreeper is a fairly common resident of the UK, happily living in woods, parks, and even large gardens if they have mature trees - yet most people have never seen one thanks to its expert camouflage. It scurries in spirals up tree

Inspired by Nature

I've been passionate about the natural world ever since I can remember. Literally. In fact, as a kid my sister was pretty much constantly laughing at me for my ability to look at a dropping on the ground and be able to tell what the animal was. She used to call me the Poo Detective! Now, I'm older and wiser...and have decided that if you can't beat 'em, you should get 'em to join you! So here I am, launching my nature website and publishing my nature-inspired wafflings for the world. As a journalist of 20 years, I'm very good at waffling... My interest in photography only really started up about four years ago, though, when I was bought a decent camera as a present. It re-ignited my passion