Possibly The Most Ridiculous Cat In The World
Our own little Luna. Being ridiculous yesterday evening on her favourite seat in the house – my wheelchair!
Protect Your Pets
The Wisley redwings have a very important message for everyone today! Small decorations and their parts can be a choking hazard to pets and young children, as demonstrated by this helpful redwing. Try to place them out of reach and if you have dogs, please don’t hang chocolates on your tree as it’s toxic to them. We don’t place any decorations on the lower part of our tree (including the lights) and we place the tree in a corner, with gifts and other obstacles around it to protect our cats. Tinsel is well known for causing intestinal blockages in pets so it’s best left in that box! Even the pine needles on live trees can cause intestinal problems. If you see your pets chewing branches please try to block off the tree from their reach or do as we do and get a synthetic tree. It’s still very pretty! Holly, mistletoe and poinsettia can all be poisonous to your pets. Mistletoe is also harmful to humans, so please keep it well out of reach of children and make sure you clear up any fallen berries. You can educate your children about the dangers of toxic plants when they’re old enough but I haven’t yet found a way to educate my cats!
Finally the redwings would like me to remind you all to keep feeding the birds!
Scottish Wildcat – At Threat Of Extinction
It’s very hard for researchers to know the exact number of these amazing cats left wild in Scotland, as they have hybridised with feral domestic-cat populations over the years. It is estimated that there are now perhaps only thirty five true wildcats left and they are at imminent threat of extinction. It breaks my heart! This beautiful female and her three kittens live at the British Wildlife Centre, near Godstone, in Surrey. Such a great place! I visited last week with my friend Nikki and godchildren, Rosie and James. Rosie loves all cats and the wildcats hold a special place in her heart too. It was wonderful to explore our native wildlife with them, whilst giving young James another photography tutorial! I have a few images of some of the other residents, but the wildcat topped my Twitter poll for what people wanted to see for today’s Wex Mondays challenge. I’m very glad to share a bit of their story with you, but for more information please visit the British Wildlife Centre wildcat page here. The centre does some wonderful work in conservation, rescue & rehabilitation and in education. It’s well worth a visit and I would really encourage everybody to support the amazing work that they do!
The weather closed in on us yesterday and scuppered plans for heading outdoors! The cats were equally unimpressed. Once they’d given up on meowing at us to fix the weather, they headed off for a Sunday catnap. This monochrome image is a soft capture, using my 50mm 1.8f lens, of our Juno snoozing on the bed. Juno and her sister, Luna, are actually quite colourful tortoiseshell and white rescue cats but I decided to go mono with this one to reflect they greyness of the day. Photographing the cats was the sum total of work I managed this weekend, so this is my choice for this week’s Fotospeed challenge. Good luck everyone!
Caracara With Plenty Of Character!
Meet Sparky, a wonderful caracara who has more character than one image alone can express! We watched in awe as Sparky performed to the crowds at RHS Wisley Gardens, with Martin Ballam and Peter Warne from Xtreme Falconry, on Saturday afternoon. The caracara is an unusual bird of prey from the Falkland Islands. You can look up more about the caracara here, but I shall hint at why they are so unusual by telling you that there aren’t any trees for them to roost in or hunt from! I love Sparky so much that I’m sharing this as my Fotospeed challenge entry this week and adding a little video I made of the show on Saturday. I hope you all enjoy it as much as we did 😀
I was so entranced by beautiful Robyn, the Hooded Vulture, that I was inspired to create this piece of digital art AND write a new poem! The plight of these incredible birds is not one that makes the headlines. They’re not as cute and fluffy as some other critically endangered species! You can read more about this in my earlier Blue Monday post. To raise awareness of the decline of the Hooded Vulture, I’m sharing this image for Wex Mondays this week.
Navigating stormy skies
Scanning the vast landscape
With steely eyes
Seeking out the
Of departed souls
Laid out upon the plains
A winged canopy
Encloses the carcass
Last rites in ancient ceremony
Feathered funeral cortege
Regret or remorse
Guardians of the dead
Carry away the corpse
Rising on broad wings
Circling above the expanse
The wind sings
Of their passing
Above the clouds
Dark and heavy with rain
Their dispersal amongst
Blue Monday: The Eye Of The Beholder
This is Robyn, a beautiful hooded vulture belonging to the fantastic Xtreme Falconry team from Dorset. Xtreme have been putting on Bird Of Prey events at RHS Wisley Gardens for many years now and always draw a crowd. Many, like myself, return time after time to see these wonderful birds! This is my Blue Monday post for that startling ring of blue around Robyn’s eye that is distinctive of this species. Hooded vultures come from Africa where they are currently declining in numbers at an alarming rate. They are now listed as a critically endangered species. Much of the decline is from poisoning. Trappers, hunters, poachers and misinformed farmers are all gunning for these shy carrion birds. This is tragic in more ways than the obvious! Vultures are not the only creatures that will be drawn to a carcass that has been poisoned. Lions, hyenas, leopard, cheetah and hunting dogs will all feed on carrion if they are hungry and haven’t got a fresh catch. Not only that, vultures and other carrion feeders are responsible for clearing away the dead animals that when left can rot and spread disease among both local animal and human populations. There is so very much to love about vultures, if you didn’t already find them beautiful and fascinating, I hope you do now!
NATUR - HIGHLIGHTS - SÜDSTEIERMARK - KUNST trifft NATUR
Birds, Animals, the Occasional Dash of Whimsy and lots of Pictures.
by Sam Allen
Inspire your next adventure.
"songs that cut to the heart of the jaded person within all of us"
inspired by the colours of the land, sea and sky of Cornwall
Welcome to the world of cats!
Photographing the beauty and wonder of Staffordshire wildlife and more