Fly Fishing, like all great sports/hobbies/obsessions, is littered with its own collection of words and phrases that have evolved to describe specific circumstances or a particular event or item. If you do not live in ‘our’ world and even if you do, it is not always totally obvious what some of this strange language might mean...
I'd had the idea for a couple of weeks. With the spring sun slowly showing itself more regularly and getting warmer, I wanted to go looking for snakes to photograph which would hopefully be emerging from their winter hibernation by now. I had one unsuccessful attempt already up on nearby Ditchling Beacon in the Sussex Wildlife Trust reserve last week with not even a sign, even though I remember seeing an adder there many years ago.
I've been out birding and wildlife watching with the camera quite a bit this winter. I have seen a lot of goldcrests but a recent comment made me think about watching out for the rarer firecrest so I have been checking each bird for the telltale eyestripes. Lo and behold today I came across my target (above) while out at the Sussex Wildlife Trust's Woods Mill reserve near Henfield.
Each winter a wildlife spectacle unfolds in my local Sussex countryside that remains largely unknown and unseen. The sea trout, the ocean going form of our native brown trout (and exactly the same Salmo trutta species), returns to freshwater rivers just as salmon do, to pair up and lay their eggs in gravel stretches high up in the feeder streams where the water runs cleaner and faster and holds more oxygen.
Getting up well before dawn, especially while travelling, can seem like a strange thing to do at the best of times but the reward often more than justifies the effort and so it was on this glorious day near Phatthalung in southern Thailand. A figurative and literal sea of pink stretched out to the horizon before us in the warm golden light of a tropical sunrise and for the time being we had this glorious natural spectacle all to ourselves.
The fallow deer rut at Petworth Park in West Sussex is one of those annual events that anyone can see thanks to the public access to the park and the deer being used to visitors.
Bouncing down the rutted dirt track, coconut palms standing sentinel on both sides, there were three of us perched precariously along with our luggage on the open sidecar attached to the struggling moped. Our journey had started many hours earlier but we had finally arrived at our first stop in Thailand, the beautiful island of Koh Lipe in the far south.
Summer time in Sussex and the wildflowers are blooming up on my local South Downs near Jack & Jill windmills. This colourful Bee orchid is one of my favourites.
Cloaked in silver-plated armour, this stunning barramundi I caught just outside Bangkok in Thailand was just one of many from that day. They hit hard and like to jump too - a great sporting fish!