Yesterday despite of, (or maybe because of), the dubious weather forecasts, I decided to revisit an old friend, Alt-Yr-Yn Woodlands, somewhere I have not been for a couple of years.
The reserve is owned by Newport City Council and run by W.I.N.G, (Wildlife in Newport Group), a part of Gwent Wildlife Trust. The site includes a five acre meadow, three ponds, a canal and woodland areas, intersected by a number of footpaths and bridleways. I remember the woodland as one of the best places to see Jays locally to me, hence the slightly cryptic title of this piece ;)
The woodland is managed but retains an almost primeval feel, due to it's age and careful management
Two views of the pools to show the feel of the woodlands
----- ------ -----
The weather was not good for photography, with my camera setting shutter speeds as low as 1/20th of a second with anything less than 800 ISO so images are not the best. but some sights are included below ...
The reserve is one of the few places in the UK that you will find the rare and shy Woodpecker Duck ...
And as for my memories of Jays? ... ... I was not disappointed, with a couple of reasonable views of several birds ...
I usually enter the reserve from the footpath at the top of the reserve on Alt-Yr-Yn View, and walk down through the reserve, and then walking home along the canal towpath. As I proceeded with this journey I came across a reason to believe may be spending too much time in the area as I saw this ... ... ...
All in all a good afternoon, despite the gloomy conditions, and I can heartily recommend a visit to this lesser known site which, by the way is visible from the M4
Dark woodlands is my reason for choosing a 2.8 lens over food... beautiful pictures nonetheless! I marked it down as a place to go when I first got here but haven't ventured up yet, must make the time soon
The GWT sites are all worth a look, though not as bird rich as some They do have a wide range of habitats, and hence wildlife - details of all their sites are in the link I gave above
Great post Nigel - still haven't seen a Jay so definitely give it a go!
John, The jays are all round the site but seem to be most visible around the pools, Especially the middle of the three, (there's even a nice bench to sit on :) )
Great set of photos matey! Love the woodpecker duck!
Think it might be the doubly rare Blue Headed Woodpecker Duck last seen in Asdas Cardiff Bay in 1902,:-) :-) I Like the pics Nigel
Nice pics Nigel, love the Jay. Must try and get up to the reserve sometime
I am curious how Nigel got the 1960's sepia style shot of the female mallard .... ;o)
I suppose I could say it's one from my archive, ( I did use a box brownie in the 60's), but it's a basic shot processed in Lightroom 3, It's one of the standard process " Yesteryear1" and a second Pre-set "Rounded Corners White". I don't often use the "wilder" pre-sets but thought this one suited the subject well.
You now realise I expect you to bring the Box Brownie then next time we are at Goldcliff or the Wetlands! ;o)
I would love to, unfortunately that camera went the way of all my other Old gear ;), i've moved a few times to often I think :(, at least I can resort to the toy camera mode on my A55, to bring back a few of the memories