Saturday, June 03, 2006

Penrhos Nature Reserve

If you travel across my lovely Anglesey and take the old A5 historical route you will eventually cross from Anglesey to Holy Island by the Stanley Embankment. As you arrive on the other side you can turn right and approach the lovely peninsular past the old octagonal toll house which now is a tea room with a traditional sign outside.

The other Sunday I has been preaching at the Holyhead English Methodist Church and returned to my home in Penysarn after a short sto at this place. As you drive from the main road past the toll house you have a small pond on your left. A number of birds share this pond. I noticed a coot and a moorhen. The moorhen had chicks of which I saw one. I had brought my new camera with me so I was ready to photograph whatever I could see. Suddenly the moorhen and the coot began facing up to each other. I suspect the young moorhens were at risk. The two birds were on the pond and flapped their wings and threatened each other. Then all went quiet as the coot beat a hasty retreat. I have never seen this sort of behaviour before. I thought I had taken photos but this was not the case so there was no record of the bird fight!

All over Anglesey there are places like this where wildlife abound and live a normal life, undisturbed by humankind. Another such place is the small lake near Mynydd Bodafon. There you can see different birds doing what comes naturally. You may see a fishing heron. You may even see a sea bird off course and exhausted.

All the time I see herring gulls sitting on local chimney pots and calling to their friends and family. Many pigeons sit up there calling away. House sparrows and chaffinches frequent the garden together with the occasional robin.

No matter where you drive you see Nature at her best. There are trees growing at an impossible angle where the prevailing south westerlies blow. In other quiet places there is no wind affecting the way plants grow. Our garden is sheltered from the prevailing wind to a degree so this accounts for our success in growing plants. Our friend, Ann, just round the corner struggles when the wind blows because her garden is elevated and in the teeth of the prevailing wind.

She has had bad luck with broad beans this year so while she is on holiday we have two trays of broad beans being brought on in our greenhouse. When they are ready they will complete in the veg garden. Speaking personally I have alreay done this to complete my supply of broad beans. I have already a single flower showing. You can use a greenhouse for filling in the gaps when they occur.

We shall be learning "on the job" for quite some time but success makes you try many different things, such as the various lettuce plants we have for picking instead of buying those bags in the supermarket. Our hanging baskets were started in the greenhouse. Last year I bought 6 strawberry plants. This year has seen them in larger numbers and there are hundreds of budding strawberries coming on as I speak.

All in all we are glad we decided to retire to this island of ours. It keeps on encouraging us to try more and more ideas in our garden. It seems to have its own micro climate that enables us to do so much in the garden. But everywhere we see evidence of growth and seasonal change and that is what it is all about. Add to this the wonderful seascapes we wee on the northern coast and you have an idea why we wanted to live here. Posted by Picasa


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