Iberianature Forum

Welcome. Say hello and read the rules here. => Blog and website updates => Topic started by: nick on July 25, 2008, 13:21 PM

Title: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on July 25, 2008, 13:21 PM
Hi all,

I've started this new thread for independent bloggers on iberianature to post their updates:

1. I’m pleased announce that Simon has just begun his own blog on iberianature. As you will have noticed, Simon is an excellent writer with an eye for the quirkier side of things, and is, like myself, a geographer who enjoys looking for patterns in landscapes, and interplay between geography, history and nature. He divides his time between Tarragona city and Fígols de Tremps, a hamlet in the Leridan Pyrenees so he’ll be concentrating on southern and eastern Catalonia.

http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/

2. Lucy also has a lovely, new post which you may or may not have seen on the swifts of Collserola.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/07/swifts-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on July 25, 2008, 17:38 PM
Lovely descriptions Simon, I particularly like the "sinuous lane snaking"  :clapping:
One little piece of advice - when you're making an http link there's a box that says "Target" so you can choose to make the link open in a new window meaning people don't leave Iberianature  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 25, 2008, 18:19 PM
Hi Simon,
Excellent descriptions.  My favourite part is when you describe walking with Lucky, the way you can use her eyes and nose.  But I wouldn't fancy being pulled downhill by a husky with no idea about tender, creaky human knees!!

"The rocks hereabouts are all conglomerate dating from the Oligaene period.  These formations crop up all over Catalunya . . ."   Does that include Montserrat and the Cingleras around the Plana de Vic?  What does "conglomerate" mean in this case?

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on July 27, 2008, 08:39 AM
Hi Guys and Gals,

Your both being too kind by far - if I could write like Lucy then I think I'd have something to be proud about!

Lisa, thanks for that tip, I'll just done this successfully - I wish I knew this tip when I did my Casa Rafela page, as I'll now have to edit about 100 links by hand! :banghead:

Lucy, your ears must have been burning as we've been talking about the downhill husky slalom problem a a lot over the weekend! Lucky is nottoo bad, as it happens, but Steak, who's a 'real' husky, is a disaster - if he feels you hesitating or trying to rein him in he just pulls harder! In fact I'm only getting these hard walks done because Streak's been grounded these last few months with a bad foot (that's better now though, but he's grounded himself because he rather likes lolling around on the sofa watching telly!) :dancing:

Regs

Simon

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on July 27, 2008, 09:53 AM
Hi Lucy,

Yes, you're right about Montserrat - what a duffer I am!  :technodevil:

Actually, I identified the geology from my prized paper copy of the Institut Cartogràfic de Catalunya's 1:250 000 geology map of Catalonia. In the key it identifies the geology and lists the largest examples. I judged Montsant is the best known from this list, which also includes the Congost de Collegats as a contender, but I didn't give this as it's very near to Serradell (it's where I was ccamping in fact!).

Montserrat, by contrast is such a tiny outcop of this conglomerate that you pretty much need a magnifying glass to see it on this map! (check it here on the on-line version: http://www.icc.cat/vissir2/?lang=ca_ES&toponim=montserrat&zoom=4&lat=4605700&lon=403400&layers=00BTFFFFT) Montserrat is the red polka dots on a yellow background.

It goes without saying that Montserrat, with its cultural significance and the way that it dwarfs the surrounding landscape, is far away away a better known piece of geology than almost the rest of Catalonia put together! Not that this mattered on jot to the cartographer/geologist, however!

I've looked at the Pla de Vic and there's no outcrop of this type there, and I'll have to leave it to you to research the cingles as I don't know the area, so wouldn't know what to look for.

I've used the term 'conglomerate' in it's simplest form of just describing the physical form of the rocks, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conglomerate_%28geology%29) and given their date as a slightly more refind I.D. beyond that it gets incredibly complicated and well beyond my competence. Here's an example regarding Monserrat, for example, " The significance of the fracture pattern of the Late-Eocene Montserrat fan-delta, Catalan Coastal Ranges (NE Spain)" and that's just the title!  :technodevil:

Meanwhile, thanks to your query I've discovered an interesting download about a nineteenth century British geologist's tour in Spain, so I'll start this off on it's own post: http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=1747.msg14693#msg14693

Regs

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 31, 2008, 13:03 PM
Hi all,
I’ve put something new on the blog.  It’s quite cooling if you’re feeling the heat.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/07/splash/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on July 31, 2008, 13:46 PM
Excellent photos Lucy... Keep on blogging.. :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on July 31, 2008, 18:49 PM
Hi Lucy, a lovely blog - as ever, hitting the nail on the head!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on August 03, 2008, 08:57 AM
Hi Guys and gals,

It's a day beyond my self-imposed deadline but here's this week's Simon's Blog:

http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/

Kep on dancin'  :dancing:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on August 03, 2008, 22:32 PM
Cool blog Lucy  :)

Blog on Simon  8)
(Goes for both last 2 entries).

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 05, 2008, 13:40 PM
Hi all,
The account of the Collserola walk (as mentioned by Nick) is now up.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/08/a-walk-in-the-woods/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on August 05, 2008, 14:53 PM
Many, many thanks for that Lucy. A poetic and dramatic description of the evening which brought everything flooding back.

The encounters with the nightjar and in particular watching the boar at 3 metres for several minutes will be unforgettable. As for our eight legged friends...
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on August 05, 2008, 18:47 PM
Hi Lucy
Great Blog. I would love to go walking in the country at night around Torre, but not on my own, and there are no ther alternatives  :'(
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on August 05, 2008, 22:11 PM
Hi Lucy,

What a brilliant blog! I've been looking forward to seeing your report ever since talking to a very bleary eyed sounding Nick on Sunday morning - it looks like your evening lived up to all his hyperbole!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on August 18, 2008, 14:19 PM
Well it's a week and a bit overdue according to my self-imposed deadline. But here's the blog that's kept me up at nights. Actually I've had other priorities and problems with images in my archives :banghead:

Hope you all enjoy! :sign:

Regards

Simon

http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2008/08/gaudi-on-a-natural-high-the-argenteria-waterfall-congost-de-collegats-lleida/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on August 20, 2008, 11:07 AM
Anyone who has seen La Sagrada Familia should read this, Fascinating story which you lead us slowly into.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 26, 2008, 15:03 PM
There's been talk about bee-eaters recently on the Forum, and I've just been blogging about them too.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/08/last-of-the-summers-bee-eaters/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 05, 2008, 11:10 AM
Better-late-than-never department: I've finally finished this, last, the week-before-last week's blog (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2008/09/water-water-everywhere-festa-de-sant-magi-tarragona-august-2008/)  :banghead:

The feeble excuse is that I was in the middle of writing one book when another commission came in, then I've been asked to do some photography for both, then a suggestion that I start a web page to advertise all this, and, oh yes, my head hurts! :technodevil:

Hope you like it!

Simon

PS Mrs S and Lucy are ships-passing-in-the-night today  ??? as Lucy comes back down to the coast while The Pack head off to make camp. For me it's a power lunch meeting in Barcelona tomorrow and then the 330 km/h train to Lleida followed by a 45 km/h trundle up the branch line to la Pobla de Segur (life in the fast lane or what!) but at least it means that next week's blog will be based in the countryside  :dancing:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 09, 2008, 11:46 AM
I've just posted a small update about the Barcelona Zoo heronry - mainly about how the herons get on with the pelicans and what's going on at the end of August.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/09/herons-and-pelicans/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on September 09, 2008, 17:57 PM
Thanks for that,

Do you know how many herons stay in the winter Lucy?

I love the watery photo of the heron shaking the goldfish. Looks like its's walking underwater
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 09, 2008, 20:26 PM
I've read that between 20 - 30% of the colony is resident - so that would mean about 40-60 herons, but many of these only come to the zoo to sleep.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on September 09, 2008, 22:05 PM

I love the watery photo of the heron shaking the goldfish. Looks like its's walking underwater

I thought it was taken underwater  :) I like the fluffy young pelican too.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 12, 2008, 05:02 AM
Hi Lucy,

That's a lovely update about the Herons. It almost feels like you're catching up on village gossip, "How's the twins' teeth?", "When does Ramon start school?" etc.

Can't wait to see your update about Aigüestortes (actually Sant Maurici by the sound of it)!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 12, 2008, 21:30 PM
Thanks for all the comments - I'll be keeping you up to date on heronry tittle-tattle in the future.  Stuff on Sant Maurici coming up soon.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 14, 2008, 07:11 AM
Hi Guys m Gals.

I'm seriously in danger of getting organised this week (don't worry, it won't last!) here's my latest post (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2008/09/a-rushing-river-ramble-the-riu-noguera-pallaresa/)   :dancing:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 14, 2008, 10:23 AM
That’s lovely, Simon. I feel like I’ve been out for a good walk while sitting here drinking coffee!  The calm after the storm and before the storm. I think you’re single-handedly going to wreck Tarragona’s reputation as a small peaceful provincial city.

Ps.Herons have their rauxa side too!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on September 14, 2008, 10:58 AM
Interesting as ever.

This particularly caught my eye as I'm always collecting evidence for the LIA in Spain:

Quote
Baro was an ancient fording place that grew to become a village from around the XIV C as the Medieval Warm Period gave way to the Little Ice Age of the XVIII C. This made life in the higher villages untenable in winter. In the upland valleys important settlements, like the Bronze Age village of Santa Creu de Llagunes, which is thought to have been inhabited from around 1500 BCE, were completely abandoned as early as the turn of the XIII C.

Good discussion of seny i rauxa. Note it's anglosaxó not anglosajó.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 14, 2008, 21:21 PM
Hi Lucy and Nick and everyone,

Thanks for your feedback! Most of the stuff I've been don lately has gone off to professional editors and I feel like I'm waiting for the Sword of Damocles; you hear nothing for weeks and then all **** breaks loose!

Good of you to notice my translation error, Nick, very sloppy on my part! Re. the LIA, you'll find lots of references to it in the Pallars Sobira, where there's a theory that many contemporary bordes (sing. borda), or field barns  (laithes in Yorkshire, not sure what you Woollybacks would call them  >:D) are thought to have been villages pre XIV C.

One of our next trips will be to the source of the Noguera Pallaresa (if the weather permits is it  at just under 2,000 m and that's the valley floor!) where there is a ruined monastery called la Mare de Déu de Montgarri and an even higher village/borda called Bonabé. I'll develop this theme over the next few months; it's especially relevant to me as I'm researching the history of the area during the XV C  :booklook:.

Ta ta for now!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 15, 2008, 09:31 AM
I've put something up about the Pyrenees - the first of a series of short pieces. I decided to chop it up to make it more digestible.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/09/pyrenees-i-espot/

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on September 22, 2008, 00:14 AM
Lucy has written up her Aiguestortes trip. Definitive trip report to the area I'd say

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/category/aiguestortes-and-sant-maurici-national-park/

(from bottom to top)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 22, 2008, 10:17 AM
Hi Lucy,

What a fabulous report of the Parc Nacional, as always!

Just one point before too many people read it; the link to the Forum topic in blog #iii doesn't seem to work, it may be your link or parhaps it's the thunderstoprm that's roaring outseide right now  :speechless:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 22, 2008, 12:14 PM
Thanks Simon, think I've got it working now. 

Just had a look at the Meteocat radar map and I can see you're somewhere underneath that big green and yellow mass, which seems to be heading this way!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 23, 2008, 17:35 PM
Hi Lucy,

That big green/yelow blob caught us up n the ebach with our dogs, miles from any useful shelter, so the only thing possible was to slug it all te way home under 69 L/m2 of rain! And check out the 'lamps' on Meteocat; they smashed my Internet, phone, the washing . . . . :technodevil:

Santa Tecla is definitley a washout this year - looks like your Merce too. the big probem is our 'colla' is having a huge open air dinner tonight - ugh! :banghead:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 27, 2008, 17:16 PM
Going for walks in Collserola always throws up surprises - and I've rounded up three of them on the blog.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/09/close-encounters-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on October 06, 2008, 11:10 AM
Hi Lucy, fab blog, as always!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 08, 2008, 18:20 PM
Read here to find out what happened when Lisa and Teresa came to Barcelona:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/10/in-search-of-two-tailed-pashas-and-the-autumn-narcissus/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on October 09, 2008, 07:38 AM
And a nice shot of the underwing of a Pasha too  >:D Thanks Lucy, I'm so glad we didn't miss the jewel of the Delta del Llobregat.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on October 09, 2008, 09:30 AM
Many thanks for bringing a great day back with such good writing
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 17, 2008, 20:37 PM
I've just posted some stuff on insects:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/10/autumn-bugs-hide-and-seek/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on October 17, 2008, 21:42 PM
Re: Reply # 18.... I'm still finding it hard to forgive them. Herons, that is. That photo of the baby rabbit.  :'(

Posts are magic, Lucy.  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 25, 2008, 08:18 AM
I had an interesting encounter on Montjuic this week:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/10/snake-in-the-wall/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on October 25, 2008, 22:01 PM
To find this 20 minutes from the Ramblas is very exciting, and as I told you people are interested in it,
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on October 26, 2008, 10:24 AM
Lucy's writing is very, very good. But she just isn't getting the traffic she deserves from Google. All good things come in time but if anyone out there has a website and could give a link to her blog that would no doubt speed up the process.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on October 26, 2008, 21:39 PM
Wow!
Great encounter with the snake Lucy, I'd love to have such a close brush with a Montpellier.
Your description of the first few seconds of your sighting is so true for that special moment when you realise what's in front of you. :clapping:
Regards
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 14, 2008, 13:50 PM
Pedralbes is a posh area of Barcelona, and here's some information about some of its cuter inhabitants!

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/11/the-red-squirrels-of-pedralbes/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on November 19, 2008, 10:17 AM
Lovely new post about the squirrels, Lucy!

My first encoun ter with Spanish red squirrels was in Madrid's Retro park - so maybe we should commission Technopat for an image update from there :dancing:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on November 21, 2008, 19:19 PM
At last Lucy's continuing brilliance has spurred me to action! See my latest freezing cold blog post here (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2008/11/autumn-along-the-noguera-pallaresa/) :dancing:

Regs

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 22, 2008, 10:51 AM
Hi Simon, I’m chilled to the bone.  I’ve just been watching the clever penguin jump into the boat on another thread, been stunned by the feet in flip flops, and have now read your account which puts on record this unusually early winter in Catalunya.  Last weekend, with the fantastic visibility, you could see the Pyrenees from Collserola, covered in more snow than at any time last year, and reading this I feel I’ve been catapulted directly into them!  It looks warm on that rock though, overlooking the sea of fog. Lovely photos.

Meanwhile, back in Autumn (only just), yesterday I found this nice group of fungi which I photographed while icy winds froze my fingers!

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/11/magpie-inkcap/

ps.thanks for your encouraging comments
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on November 22, 2008, 21:46 PM
Wonderful to see photos of an area that's been so much in my mind recently Simon. Deep valleys, cut off for centuries.......

And I like inkcaps Lucy. That's a new one on me. Is it edible? By the way.... (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wicked_Witch_of_the_East)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 23, 2008, 08:38 AM
Hi Lisa, Other inkcaps are edible, but not this one - I've found two references to it being toxic. 

I did mean the W.W. of the West - the remains of the black cap dissolving into the earth made me think of the moment when Dorothy douses her in water - she starts dissolving until there's nothing left except her black clothes on the ground.  Remember this moment as rather scary but also a great relief!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on November 25, 2008, 08:16 AM
Hi Lucy and Lisa,

Glad you likes the snappies - to be honest we've run away from the bitter cold and decamped here to balmy (well, hardly at 7º :speechless:) Tarragona, whilst up in the mountains as I write it's 12º below!

Frogs and snails and puppy dogs tails department: isn't it curious that the 'melting' mushrooms reminded you of the WWW, Lucy (a misunderstood and poorly appreciated literary anti-heroine in my humble o.!), whereas I'm sure my first reaction would have been to recall childhood memories of dousing slugs in the back yard with 'Saxa' cooking salt  :technodevil:

Cheers

Simon

PS I thought of you and Nick shivering up there in the big smoke when Eloi (new Car TV main weather man now that Monica Lopez has defected to TV1!) told is that it's only 7 in Barna - it's cooler here in TGN but we've got central heatng  - nah nah ni nah nah!

PPS I know Nick's flat hasn't and I'm guessing about your home Lucy
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 25, 2008, 11:44 AM
Certainly no central heating where I live -  there haven't been many changes round here since the place was built over a century ago!  But on a crisp winter day, with the sun shining in, it's toasting warm - at least in the mornings . . .

I'm going to have to revisit the Wizard of Oz to see how differently the WW of the W strikes me now, compared to my 8-year-old self.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on November 25, 2008, 11:54 AM
Be careful going back in time Lucy! I'd hate to bump into my eight year old self :technodevil: Or is it a case of watching too much Dr Who on Canal 33 :dancing:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on November 28, 2008, 07:57 AM
That'll teach me to try and be a clever clogs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wicked_Witch_of_the_West)......or will it?  >:D
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 30, 2008, 08:28 AM
I'm still wracking my brains over that one.  Meanwhile, here's a new post:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/11/early-birds-on-montjuic/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on November 30, 2008, 09:55 AM
And how beautifully you write, Lucy.  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 11, 2008, 09:47 AM
Here's an update on the bird situation in Pedralbes park:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/12/firecrest-season/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on December 11, 2008, 21:07 PM
As enjoyable as ever.
Thanks Lucy.  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 12, 2008, 17:31 PM
Thanks Glennie!  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on December 12, 2008, 17:55 PM
Hi Lucy
It really is like being there, we do get the occasional Goldcrest up on the terrace, wagtails year round by the river and the occasional Robin.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 19, 2008, 08:50 AM
I've just managed to get in a last post about autumn, before it finishes on Sunday.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/12/beech-woods-volcanoes-and-beans/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on December 19, 2008, 08:53 AM
A lovely blog Lucy, as ever, and a timely reminder to me to pull my socks up. I don't think I'll have time though as I'm off to Tremp for the duration as of tomorrow.

Happy Christmas

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 19, 2008, 22:54 PM
Bon nadal, Simon.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 26, 2008, 14:42 PM
Hope everyone's enjoying the fiestas.  Here's an account of a walk I did just before Christmas.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2008/12/boars-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on December 26, 2008, 21:07 PM
Some lovely photos Lucy.
Those trees are magnificent.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on December 27, 2008, 13:11 PM
Another very interesting account of your walk Lucy.
I love the atmospheric shot of the Goldcrest. :santa_afro:                     
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on December 28, 2008, 07:17 AM
Hi Lucy. I wonder if that's the same gang of Pekin robins that we saw in October? Well done on having the prescence of mind to take that brave shot of the Wild boar boar  :santa_afro:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 28, 2008, 10:12 AM
Hi Lisa and all,
Collserola's Pekin robin population seems to have boomed this year - since that sighting last October, I've been seeing - or hearing - them all over the place.  The dense undergrowth of the woods seems to suit them just fine.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 08, 2009, 19:27 PM
It was exciting to see Collserola white with snow yesterday, however briefly. I found an hour to go up and see it - just in time, before it melted.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/01/snowfall-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 23, 2009, 11:51 AM
Here's anothe snippet of park life:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/01/birds-in-the-bush/

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on January 23, 2009, 12:55 PM
Hi Lucy
As always a great blog, have you thought about turning them into a book?
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on January 23, 2009, 17:53 PM
Beautiful photos too.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 23, 2009, 20:17 PM
Hi Dave and Lisa,
I'm really glad you're enjoying the blog.  A book's a nice idea, but I'd have to get alot more text together, as so much is photographs.  The internet is brilliant for combining the two.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 31, 2009, 16:00 PM
Dave mentioned one of his neighbours lost a chimney in last weekend's gales.  Here's what happened in Collserola:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/01/wild-wind/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on January 31, 2009, 18:56 PM
Hi Lucy
As you say quite frightening the power of nature, strangely our terrace was completely untouched, as the brunt of the wind was against the back of the building, once again a great blog.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on February 06, 2009, 16:44 PM
Hello all,

Technopat has recently reminded me that there's more to life the work, stress and tears. So despite innumerable problem that we've been facing recently, here's a rare highlight (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/?p=275&preview=true) that's happened during the recent past!

Regards

Simon

PS Full marks to Lucy for her sterling work!

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on February 07, 2009, 09:26 AM
Simon, you lucky, lucky thing!  If you went out with the specific purpose of watching otters, I'm sure you would never, never see anything like this.  And miraculously you had the camera at hand so you could record it.  Fantastic!  Glad to see you resurfacing on the Forum!

After that dip in cold waters, you can warm up on Montjuic castle:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/02/a-moorish-gecko/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on February 07, 2009, 22:34 PM
Hi Lucy,

Fascinating shots of the Moorish Gecko  :clapping: , particularly the one showing the regrowth of the tail. I noticed little red specs dotted around the Gecko's body in all three shots, do you know what they are? Parasites? Or just debris perhaps?
Regards
Steve   
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on February 08, 2009, 07:09 AM
Hi Steve, I've been wondering about them too.  Checking your suggestion of parasites, I found this advice for people about to buy a (Leopard) gecko:

Quote
Look for signs of parasites, such as mites, which look like specks of paprika or red dust.

I think that might be the explanation.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on February 08, 2009, 16:38 PM
Hi Lucy,

That certainly sounds like the right sort of thing, though I'm surprised to see them on a gecko, I guess there is a parasite for everything!
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on February 09, 2009, 09:13 AM
Never seen more than otter tracks in Spain

Enviously

Nick

Great photos both of you!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on February 19, 2009, 10:06 AM
A small update on what's happening in Collserola:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/02/time-for-almond-blossom/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on February 19, 2009, 12:44 PM
Love that cheeky photo of the blackcap, Lucy.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 01, 2009, 19:10 PM
Here's a report on the Black redstarts who winter on Montjuic:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/03/the-black-redstarts-of-the-cami-del-mar/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on March 01, 2009, 22:24 PM
Poetic as usual. And I do love that last photo with the redstart and the container ship.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on March 02, 2009, 13:07 PM
Hi Lucy
I agree, nice report, about one of my favourite birds, we usually have a family around the terrace in Spring.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 09, 2009, 08:58 AM
After a recent boar sighting I've posted this:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/03/heavenly-mud/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 15, 2009, 21:17 PM
A couple of weeks ago, on one of the first really warm days this year, I went on a walk in Montseny, the natural park 50 km from Barcelona.  Its proximity to the metropolis sometimes causes problems.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/03/tranquility-this-way-pla-de-la-calma/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 24, 2009, 09:40 AM
The flowers of Collserola are among the most familiar ones, but still nice to see:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/03/whats-blooming-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on March 24, 2009, 10:17 AM
Great words and images Lucy....

Why are orchids becoming extinct in Collserola?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 24, 2009, 11:30 AM
Hi Clive, Theories I've come across are the proliferation of boars, and the increase of trees in detriment of open spaces.  Will ask for more information.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on March 25, 2009, 17:41 PM
Hi Guys and gals,

Back again after yet another long break, this time to Sussex, Madrid and other strange places. It's good to feel at 'home' again - but oh, did I suffer the morning after! Here's the blog report! (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/03/calcotada/)

Much more soon I promise, including a trip to the Balearics.  :sign:

Regs

Simon X
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Technopat on March 25, 2009, 19:39 PM
Greetings Simon,
Finally made it over to yer blog  :roxysnail: - Terrific! (Sp. anyone?)

Just one question: what's the En. for calçotada ? :technodevil:

Envious-'cos-Madrid's-gastronomy-is-largely-based-on-awful-offal regs.,
Technopat
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on March 25, 2009, 20:40 PM
Hi Teeps,

Thank you for your kind words! Sadly, I think the English for calçotada is something like, 'that burnt spring onion thingy wot they do darn sarff in Spain like'! :technodevil:

So, I have to tempt you over here - you'd love it!!! :dancing:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Technopat on March 26, 2009, 07:42 AM
And ever-so-greasy?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on March 26, 2009, 08:11 AM
Greasy, squelchy, slimy, succulent, unctuous, scumptious, . . .  :dancing:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on March 26, 2009, 17:29 PM
Damn Simon, that looks like an authentic calçotada, which I like to call a Catalan onion party. Not been to one of those for several years. I had a chance two Sundays ago, but at the last minute it slipped out of my reach. I've had to make do with restaurant calçotadas which is just not the same as doing it in the country Looking at the photos you can almost smell those calçots.

Enviously
Nick
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 08, 2009, 09:13 AM
More Collserola encounters, summed up by the title:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/04/the-hummingbird-hawkmoth-and-the-wood-spurge/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on April 08, 2009, 12:17 PM
Hi Lucy once again a wonderful blog with brilliant pictures, especially the Hummingbird Hawkmoth, one of my favourite insects, during Summer they visit the terrace most days. Looking forward to seeing you at the Summit.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 08, 2009, 21:56 PM
Hi Dave, Igualmente.  Not long now.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on April 09, 2009, 11:35 AM
Stunning photos of what must be one of the most difficult insects to capture  :clapping:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 14, 2009, 10:02 AM
During the holidays I went back to Montgrony in the Catalan Pyrenees:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/04/early-spring-in-montgrony/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on April 16, 2009, 13:27 PM
I've been working on my asides from iberianature proper. This is (in part) to promote Lucy's and my upcoming nature and history tours

http://iberianature.com/barcelona/

Check out the goats in one of the city's parks.

http://iberianature.com/barcelona/2009/04/14/las-cabras-del-turo-de-la-rovira/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on April 17, 2009, 07:15 AM
Hi Lucy et al,

What wonderful images, as always, Lucy!

Like Dave we too have hummingbird hawk moths feeding on our terrace, but photographing them  :banghead:, as you say, they are ,"restless foragers"! Well done :dancing:

Regs

Simon

PS I'm getting seriously envious of you lot at the Picos summit. My Mallorca trip has been put off, perhaps for good. But I am going to Los Monegros next week, perhaps as a piece of living archeology  :speechless:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 21, 2009, 08:26 AM
After a pretty wet Easter, the last day was bright and sunny - time for a walk in Collserola:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/04/sol-y-sombra-easter-monday-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on April 21, 2009, 13:46 PM
Hi Lucy
Pure poetry and great pictures, Our Resident Black redstart scolds us just the same when we dare to go on the terrace, when he is there
regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on April 26, 2009, 11:47 AM
I couldn't agree more, Dave, poetry and pictures combined, thanks Lucy!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on April 28, 2009, 22:18 PM
Here's  (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/04/los-monegros/)another feeble effort on my part.

Cheers

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on April 28, 2009, 22:57 PM
Nice to see some pictures of the area Simon... Maybe you could add them to the topic here and link back to your blog?
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=1020.0

I posted the link to the video by the gran scala promoters... It is quite amazing... Jaw droppingly amazing... Maybe amazing isn't the right word though...
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on April 29, 2009, 06:45 AM
That's a lovely first photo of Los Monegros in spring Simon. Big sky and flowers too. Do you know this website? Friends of Los Monegros Association. (http://idd004kb.eresmas.net/monegros/)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on April 29, 2009, 11:21 AM
Hi Lisa, thanks for the link to Friends of Los Monegros - I've added the link to that topic and wrongly attributed it to Clive  :speechless:, so sorry for this if you've seen it already, popping over there to change it now :angel:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on May 08, 2009, 03:55 AM
Another long journey took us to the Ebro Delta (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/05/stormy-weather-springtime-in-the-ebro-delta/) last week. Next week, camping in La Garrotxa - if we don't drown like kittens in the Pyrenees over the weekend!

Regs

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on May 17, 2009, 09:25 AM
May is turning into a stunning month in Collserola, after months of uncharacteristically regular rainfall.  It's another excuse to abandon everything and go up and wander around there.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/05/collserola-maquia-ignites/

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on May 24, 2009, 11:11 AM
Following on from Lucy's wonderful blog about this wonderful wet spring - here are two new blogs from me that feature the rainfall: the Noguera Pallaresa in flood (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/05/snowmelt-fills-the-noguera-pallaresa/) and a very wet week in La Garrotxa (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/05/jurassic-park-a-week-in-la-garrotxa/)!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on May 24, 2009, 15:05 PM
What's a withie?  :noidea:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on May 24, 2009, 16:07 PM
Hi Lisa,

Here's the definition, sorry to have mystified you. It was a common enough word in my youth, along the banks of the River Severn - all that jolly boating I suppose!

Quote
withy |?w?ði| (also withe )
noun ( pl. withies or withes )
a tough flexible branch of an osier or other willow, used for tying, binding, or basketry.
• another term for osier .
ORIGIN Old English w?thig, of Germanic origin; related to German Weide.

But thanks for the feedback, I've clarified it a little now.

Cheers

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 10, 2009, 10:03 AM
For the long weekend of Segunda Pascua I went to Alinyà, a small valley in the Catalan Pre-Pyrenees.  Here are some impressions:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/06/the-valley-of-alinya/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on June 10, 2009, 13:53 PM
Hi Lucy, are those mating fritillaries in the first photo the same ones that are up for ID? I'm agreeing with you, leaning heavily towards Knapweed. For the second, solitary frit. how about Glanville? I give in on the ringlet  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 10, 2009, 19:58 PM
Hi Lisa,
I'm glad you think Glanville - I do too.  I've found some observations about identifying Knapweed fritillaries, which I'm going to add to the original post (they're the same ones).
Yes, the ringlets are mind-boggling.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 18, 2009, 10:29 AM
Thanks to JM Sesma, the two fritillaries have been confirmed as Provençal and Glanville, while the ringlet is possibly Prunner's.  Impossible to tell without upper view, but it's the most cited ringlet for Alinyà. 
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on June 18, 2009, 13:51 PM
Thanks to JM Sesma, the two fritillaries have been confirmed as Provençal and Glanville, while the ringlet is possibly Prunner's.  Impossible to tell without upper view, but it's the most cited ringlet for Alinyà. 

Glad you finally got there. Bit of a struggle!  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 21, 2009, 12:50 PM
Long evenings in June are great for walks:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/06/sunday-evening-in-sunny-june/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on June 21, 2009, 16:50 PM
Hi Lucy
I will probably repeat this several times, pure poetry, you make me want to be there
regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 22, 2009, 23:31 PM
Thanks for the feedback Dave - it's very heartening.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on June 24, 2009, 20:13 PM
I just love the way our gently poetic writer casually drops in the boar at the end  8)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 28, 2009, 15:08 PM
A floral post set in Montjuic:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/06/three-flowers-on-montjuic/

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 05, 2009, 08:16 AM
Some of the regular butterflies on Collserola:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/07/evening-butterflies/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on July 05, 2009, 17:20 PM
Beautiful evening sun-lit photos. (I like the octopus too  :) )
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Sue on July 06, 2009, 15:07 PM
Really lovely photos Lucy    :clapping:  and a great time of day to enjoy the butterflies 
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on July 10, 2009, 23:23 PM
Beautiful photographs Lucy, I love the uncluttered backgrounds that make the butterflies really stand out so well. Evenings are such great times for observing insects as they calm down for the day in a far more gentle light.  The "paper lantern" analogy is such a great description.

Regards
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 18, 2009, 16:41 PM
Last week Nick and Monica invited me on a trip to Montseny, to the coolest and most northerly part, Santa Fe.  Here's the Trip Report:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/07/picnic-on-santa-fe/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 02, 2009, 12:05 PM
Haven't reported from the park for a while:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/08/late-july-in-the-park/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on August 07, 2009, 18:00 PM
Hi Lucy et al,

Another beautiful post Lucy, as ever - where do you find the patience!

I don't seem to have been home for ever, so here's (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/08/a-short-summer-jaunt-to-andalusia/) a foretaste of some of my recent adventures!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on August 17, 2009, 11:49 AM
Finally catching up on the paperwork, as it were, after so many jopurneys of late. Here's (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/08/the-valle-de-roncal-navarre/) part one of our adventures in Navarre last month! :sign:

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on August 17, 2009, 12:17 PM
Hi Simon
Nice report and photos, Is the name of the valley anything to do with roncar, which apart from being the call of the Ciervo, also means snore  ???
regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on August 17, 2009, 12:31 PM
Thanks Dave, good to hear from you!

'Roncal' hmm, that would be an interesting theory to test, there are certainly lots of deer in the woods thereabouts, and I guess the damp, misty air would be conducive to respiratory disease; hence a native propensity for snoring perhaps!

But in fact Roncal is a pretty sleepy place all round (we liked it much more than Isaba and wished there was a camp site there!), so maybe the etymology is more like the Snorings (http://www.the-snorings.co.uk/) in Norfolk, one of my favourite places!  :dancing:

More soon!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on August 17, 2009, 13:17 PM
Hi Simon and all
Absolutely fascinating place names, in the Cotswolds we have North Piddle, South Piddle and Piddle Hinton, while not far away in Worcestershire there is the famous Piddle in the Hole
and Wyre Piddle with its famous Brewery. Piddle apparently means in old English a Fen or a Bog.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 17, 2009, 17:03 PM
Hi Simon,
Nice trip reports - from Andalucia to Navarre, what a contrast! I agree, you don't have to leave Spain to travel in different countries.

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 17, 2009, 18:56 PM
Sweltering away here, I enjoyed reliving this walk I did a week or so ago - well, there wasn't that much walking involved, mainly paddling.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/08/midday-with-damselflies/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on August 28, 2009, 18:59 PM
Hi Lucy,

Another great blog entry with top notch photos.
I can see that the world of dragons & damsels is now looming large on your radar!

Regards
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on August 29, 2009, 10:18 AM
Hi Lucy
Wonderful
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 08, 2009, 14:42 PM
Steve's right - I'm noticing them everywhere.  Flocks of Red-veined Darters are brightening up the dry slopes of Collserola at the moment.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/09/dragonflies-out-to-graze/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on September 08, 2009, 19:53 PM
Welcome to my world Lucy!
Love the way you've caught the dragons, backlit by the sun. 
Another very atmospheric entry, thanks for the link!

Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on September 08, 2009, 20:24 PM
Beautiful pictures Lucy....
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Technopat on September 14, 2009, 01:23 AM
Beautiful pics, Lucy! :clapping:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on September 16, 2009, 10:20 AM
And another, beautiful photos Lucy! Particularly the first one  :clapping:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 21, 2009, 11:05 AM
I've finally got round to a trip report, with some impressions of Somiedo.  More reports about the visit to the Cordillera will appear in due course.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/09/on-the-puerto-de-somiedo/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on September 21, 2009, 11:19 AM
Lovely as ever Lucy. Brought back fond memories of visiting Somiedo a few years back.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Technopat on September 21, 2009, 13:59 PM
Nice one, Lucy!
Surprised to see there aren't any boats in the Puerto de Somiedo  8)
Galloping red cows, yes. Beetle-snarfing frogs, yes. And by all accounts, bilberry-snarfin' bears. But not a boat in sight!

These-things-are-sent-to-try-us regs.,
Technopat
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on September 27, 2009, 07:47 AM
We've had heifers running downhill at us too, scary  :o I'd rather deal with the mastin/a any day.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on September 27, 2009, 16:52 PM
Hi Lucy et al.

Fantastic pictures as ever Lucy, and a lovely report from a lovely place. Ypu've allayed my guilty feelings about not getting round to report some of our summer adventures! So keep an eye open this week as I begin to get into autumn 'orgainsed' mode - I hope  :)

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 04, 2009, 17:31 PM
Another favourite place up north:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/10/la-majua-and-beyond/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 17, 2009, 16:13 PM
It's been a scorching October (until two days ago) and plenty of dragon/damselfly activity in the park.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/10/october-heat/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on October 17, 2009, 20:12 PM
Hi Lucy,

Another great set of photos & narrative.

You can even see the 3 small eyes (ocelli) in the centre of the Western Willow Spreadwing's head that control flight!  :clapping:

Regards
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 17, 2009, 20:30 PM
Hi Steve,
Thanks for pointing them out!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on October 21, 2009, 12:08 PM
Hi Lucy et al,

You've put me to shame yet again Lucy, where do you find the time for all this!

Meanwhile, I've been trying to catch up with all of our summer pursuits - more from Navarre, a trip to the Irati Foretst (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/10/the-irati-forest/)!

Cheers and more soon I hope!

Regs

Simon

PS Lucy, how do you get your images to appear so clear on the Blog page? Mine are fine in thier original format on my computer, but always appear fuzzy once I upload them here. This is not the case on my Casa Rafela blog, which uses the same Wordpress software!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on October 21, 2009, 14:11 PM
Enjoyed reading both of them!

Mmm vis images. It is strange...your images are almost the same size as Lucy's - but when you upload to your Casa Rafael site are they also the same size as the ones you upload to your iberianature blog?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on October 21, 2009, 16:26 PM
I think so! In fact they are much larger than those that I load onto the Forum , which turn out fine - see the deer shots on my latest post (http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=2712.0)!

Wierd!

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: elmussol on October 21, 2009, 21:30 PM
PS Lucy, how do you get your images to appear so clear on the Blog page? Mine are fine in thier original format on my computer, but always appear fuzzy once I upload them here. This is not the case on my Casa Rafela blog, which uses the same Wordpress software!

The horizontal dimension of your landscape images is 300 pixels at 72dpi. On anything larger than a small laptop, this image is actually displayed at c400 pixels wide. It is therefore always enlarged. 72dpi is less than the resolution of the average monitor and therefore everything looks pixelated when it is 'blown up'.

By comparison, Lucy's images are 500 pixels wide at 72dpi and are therefore not enlarged and therefore look crisp.

Solution: always size the photos to a larger number than the display dimensions. If you need to get the file size down it is worth decreasing the 'quality' setting, as the loss in picture quality is smaller compared to the loss by enlargement.

Hope this helps.

pault
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 21, 2009, 23:00 PM
Hi Simon,
I do 2 things to the photos - first open up in photoshop, go to "help" and resize there (usually to 500).  Then I open up the photo again with the Mac preview, click on "save as" and move down two notches on the quality scale, to get the file size down, as Pault suggests.

I enjoyed your forest blog - it brought back memories of going there many years ago.  I remember it was the first time I'd ever seen cows grazing in a forest, which struck me as incredibly strange at the time!  There's a very good film set in Ochagavia -Secretos del Corazon.  Really recommend it.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on October 22, 2009, 07:23 AM
Thanks Lucy and Paul, I'll try this today with some new images and if it works I'll work backwards as far as time and patiece allows  :speechless: !

The owner of the campsite (http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=2410.msg19648#new) in the Alt Garrotxa (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/05/jurassic-park-a-week-in-la-garrotxa/) grazes cows in his own forest and had interesting observations and anecdotes about the process; he said that only cows several generations down the line could be left alone as otherwise they would poison themselves by eating everything!

Secretos del corazón looks great. Maybe I'll get a copy n the library and watch it this evening!

Regs

Simon

PS I've now updated the post with resized and saved images as you suggested (except I use ColorSync Utilty for the sizeing, which I find much quicker and easier that Photoshop!). It looks much better, so a big 'Thank you' to my friends/collaborators on The Forum  :sign:

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: andyj on October 22, 2009, 14:29 PM
"The owner of the campsite in the Alt Garrotxa grazes cows in his own forest and had interesting observations and anecdotes about the process; he said that only cows several generations down the line could be left alone as otherwise they would poison themselves by eating everything!"

This is tradional "shepharding" at its best.

It is the same situation as herdwick sheep on the lake district fells and cows grazing marshland on fens with ditch systems in Shropshire or Somerset. Cattle or other stock not used to local hazards sometimes drown or get poisoned, simply beacuse they dont know what a ditch is or does to a cow that cant swim! If they survive they learn not to do it again! and pass on that fear to the herd or offspring.

Also, through successive generations they know that they can only wonder so far, and therefore stick to an area making herding up easier and they can be left out on the fells etc for long periods. They simply dont stray from a certain part of the fell or fen. This again is passed down through the generations. It is like having an invisible fence. I must have taken so many years to get this entrenched in a herd!

Loss of these stock traits were a big worry when foot and mouth hit the UK and many herds of cattle and sheep in remote areas might have been destroyed. I would imagine that if these herds and flocks were destroyed then more modern practie would have come in with fencing, plant eradication and ditch culverting. Not so good for the wildlife.

Andy
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on October 22, 2009, 16:00 PM
Hi Andy,

Thanks for these comments. I used to live in Shropshire (a great many years ago!) but in the hilly southern half so never knew of this practise there, which I guess took/takes place in the northern plains*. So I'd be interested to find out more.

This subject sounds so interesting I've started another topic in another part (http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,2715.msg21800.html#msg21800?PHPSESSID=cbc632c4fe12bc1f2675d1c636c5c204) of the Forum in the hope of a wider readership.

Regs

Simon

* I was more interested in girls and motorbikes in those days - still am (http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=966.msg21777#msg21777) according to certain persons on this 'ere wonderful Forum  >:D
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on October 23, 2009, 07:38 AM
After a somewhat marathon session I've added some more trip reports (this time less than two months old!). This time back on my home turf in the Catalan Pyrenees (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/category/catalan-pyrenees/), specifically the Parc Nacional d'Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici.

Regs

Simon
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: elmussol on October 23, 2009, 11:56 AM
After a somewhat marathon session I've added some more trip reports (this time less than two months old!). This time back on my home turf in the Catalan Pyrenees (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/category/catalan-pyrenees/), specifically the Parc Nacional d'Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici.

And the pictures look wicked  :technodevil:

Nice one Simon. Good Stuff.

Time to clear up some wind damage...

pault
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 31, 2009, 10:37 AM
This is a kind of therapy for my arachnophobia:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/10/the-mediterranean-tarantula-or-wolf-spider/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on October 31, 2009, 12:14 PM
Hi Lucy
Once agin great photos and a very informative blog. Keep up the good work
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 31, 2009, 16:31 PM
Cheers Dave!   :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Sue on October 31, 2009, 19:22 PM
Hi Lucy,
you are very brave....especially getting face to face with this lady!!

I think that the species might be the similar Hogna radiata (http://www.insectariumvirtual.com/galeria/Hogna-radiata-img20614.search.html), here is another selection of images, some showing those radiating beige lines (http://www.galerie-insecte.org/galerie/html/ARACHNIDA__Araneae__Lycosidae__hogna__radiata.html) more clearly...I took some photos of one earlier this year, but with it safely in a glass  8)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 31, 2009, 21:00 PM
Thanks Sue!! I'm going to have to re-write that one.  At least now I know lots about the Lycosa tarantula if ever I come across one.  I herby vow to be more cautious about ids in the future  ::) 
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 01, 2009, 10:36 AM
Here's my corrected post:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/11/wolf-spider-in-collserola-hogna-radiata/

Sorry about the mistake. 

After reading more about wolf spiders in general, what struck me about the Lycosa tarantula is how long the spiderlings stay with their mother - one reference said up to six months - and the way the spiderlings disperse in two seasons: one lot in autumn and the rest in spring.  In other species, like the Hogna radiata, the period is only about a week.  For those who are interested, there are some great studies on the L.tarantula population of the Garraf (just outside Barcelona) by Jordi Moya-Laraño and Mar Cabeza, which you can download in pdf from Google.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on November 01, 2009, 17:46 PM
Hi Lucy,

I would love to have taken those shots of the mother & babies, another great bit of observation. From a distance I guess the mother's abdomen must superficially look like an entirely different species initially (more hairy!).

Regards
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Sue on November 01, 2009, 19:45 PM
Hi Lucy, sorry about that...making extra work for you!  :-X
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 01, 2009, 21:01 PM
Thank Darwin you spotted it!

Now I'm off to the creepie-crawlie section to post a spider id . . .
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on November 02, 2009, 00:37 AM
Lucy, these photos are gruesome. You have been obviously been undergoing some form of phobia shock therapy.

I can assure everyone on the forum that you are very brave to have got so close, despite your feelings of aversion, disgust and hate towards our loathsome eight-legged brethren.

They continue, I'm afraid, to give me the willies.

It seems, like other wolf spiders, that they are venemous to humans.  http://insectos.org/galeria/Hogna-radiata-img50935.html Anybody?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on November 02, 2009, 07:00 AM
awwww cmon guys.. :) All together in your best Texas drawl! " An eight legged friend and eight legged friend, she'll never let you down... She's honest and faithfull right up to the end that wonderful, wonderful eight legged friend....."

Great piccies Lucy. keep on posting
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 02, 2009, 08:02 AM
Nick, somehow a creature carrying her babies on her back can't be an object of loathing! 

I thought progress had been made, but after yesterday I'm not so sure (see http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php?topic=2735.msg21927#new).  I'm afraid screams rang out. 
Luckily I wasn't alone!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on November 02, 2009, 10:35 AM
You be careful out there in the wilds of Collserola
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 15, 2009, 13:01 PM
Some seasonal observations:
http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/11/mediterranean-autumn/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 08, 2009, 15:33 PM
I love Montjuic Castle wall - it's old and crumbling and there's always something going on in the crevices.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/12/zooming-in-on-montjuic-castle-i/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on December 08, 2009, 17:27 PM
Hi Lucy
I know it is like repeating myself, but your blogs are, as always, brilliant. Perhaps the ants are just, like politicians, feathering their nest.  :santa_azn:
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 08, 2009, 21:05 PM
 :santa_grin:

Thanks Dave, for putting a timely light on the matter.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on December 08, 2009, 22:27 PM
Great Pictures and words as we have come to expect Lucy... :) I like Jumping spiders, they are always so busy skipping around... If you get up real close it seems they are looking right back at you.... :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on December 10, 2009, 21:49 PM
Lucy, you're getting closerer and closerer  :santa_shocked: I'm expecting genetalia next  :santa_cheesy:

(And thanks for the puffball names).
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on December 15, 2009, 16:34 PM
"Better late than never" is one of my pet phrases  (it drives Mrs S crazy, of course!) - so here's a trip report (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2009/12/in-hannibals-footprints/) from the first of this year's Estiuets de Sant Martí (Indian Summers) - more soon, or more specifically when I sort out some hundreds of .jpg files  :banghead:

Regs

Simon

PS well done Lucy - brilliant as ever!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Technopat on December 16, 2009, 18:50 PM
Greetings Simon 'n' All,
Great ride read!
Glad to see that your Faithful Steed/Flying Banana is bearing up well under the strain of getting you through all those curves.

Off-to-catch-up-on-Lucy's-blog regs.,
Technopat

PS.
Pet theories, indeed!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on December 16, 2009, 20:48 PM
How long did the trip take you Simon?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on December 17, 2009, 07:36 AM
Hi Nick, Mr T et al,

Nick, it took about two hours from the first photo near Borén to the 'summit' at Pla de Beret. That's about twenty kilomtres, almost all of it dirt track/mud, etc. Partly because I kept stopping but mainly because I like to plod along rather than going hell for leather like the folks that get the rest of us bikers a bad name! I also need to do something about having a gauntlet operated camera on a halliard around my neck, or maybe even mounted on the skid lid!

In fact I got a late start and didn't have time to stop and explore the abandoned monastery at Montgarri (http://www.lleidatur.com/cat/religios_valaran.html), which was one of my objectives.

I now realise that I've tracked the entire length of the Noguerera Pallaresa one way or another, from its confluence with the Segre at Camarasa right up to the source at Pla de Beret (see my earlier blog (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2008/11/autumn-along-the-noguera-pallaresa/)). Next spring Mrs S and I are planning to do the whole trip by a variety of 'self propelled' means, walking, cycling, canoeing, rafting (that's her 'treat'), hang-gliding (with a proper pilot I hasten to add - that's my 'treat' >:D) and finally, for her birthday surprise perhaps, by hot air ballon over the Sierra de Montsec* - This trip will deserve a Superblog - a book even!

I also had a big problem as the trail turned west into the setting sun, dappled as I went in and out of the tree cover - very romantic sounding until you can't see anythjbg, epecially patches of vike mud, deep ruts, huge boulders, or even the trail itself witthout polarised sunglasses. And where were said polarised, cool, classic pilot-style, expensive, Rayban shade I hear you ask? Over 100 miles away onn the sideboard of my flat in Tarrragna, that's where. Or, rather more succinctly put my Mrs S - "Where you b****y well left them!"  :technodevil:

Cheers

Simon

PS Technopat, yes, 'pet theory', but I don't go as far as this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antiscience)!

* that's my next blog, this week hopefully!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 20, 2009, 10:11 AM
I hope this little thing has found a snug warm hole to hibernate in.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2009/12/zooming-in-on-montjuic-castleii-a-montpellier-snake/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on December 20, 2009, 10:58 AM
Hi Lucy
You even makes snakes sound cuddly, lovely report
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on December 20, 2009, 11:03 AM
Hey Lucy, having seen a sneak preview of one of your photos two weeks ago, I'd been waiting excitedly for this post. Wow!

I was talking last night to a couple of Barcelona professional naturalists about your latest capture. They are stunned as to how on earth you do it. One snake on Montjuic you could say was a stroke of luck but two...Whatever the case, they are clearly happily breeding in this wild corner of Barcelona.

PS

How long did you watch it for?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on December 20, 2009, 11:20 AM
Beautiful head shot Lucy! :santa_afro:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 20, 2009, 19:23 PM
I had to go after about half an hour - would have been great to stay and see if it had any luck with the geckos. Still, I was lucky to have had the camera with me. 
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 17, 2010, 10:52 AM
Here are some shots taken in the park over the last few weeks.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/01/cold-days-in-the-park/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on January 17, 2010, 23:03 PM
Love the rat!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on January 18, 2010, 13:23 PM
Me too, and the surfing butterfly  8)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Sue on January 18, 2010, 20:46 PM
A fabulous set of images, each moment well captured Lucy  :clapping:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on January 20, 2010, 16:29 PM
You should be entering for competitions Lucy. You just get better and better.  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on February 09, 2010, 10:02 AM
More park goings-on:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/02/smug-parakeets-and-resourceful-magpies/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 07, 2010, 16:22 PM
I did some snooping on the private life of common toads the other day.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/03/spring-arrives-for-common-toads/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on March 07, 2010, 16:37 PM
Hi Lucy,

That's quite a clump of toads, (is there a name for a group of toads?!), it makes you wonder how the female ever survive, but as you say, some don't. I was amazed to find a year or two ago that the both the Spanish & English Common Toads are the same species Bufo bufo, some of the females (common toads that is!) that I have seen in Andalucia are enormous compared with their English cousins.  Your toads are mating well in advance of ours in Cornwall so it's great to see a taste of the spring to come.

Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on March 07, 2010, 16:38 PM
Hi Lucy
A lovely report, According to Kenneth Grahame, though, Toads go ´Beep Beep´  :)
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 07, 2010, 18:28 PM
Apparently you can say a knot of toads!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on March 18, 2010, 18:22 PM
I've just added a Google Reader. Not sure yet of full potential of this, but basically, if you don't know how Google Reader works you add rss feeds to your Google Reader and click on the stories you want to make public. I'm sure if I like the fact that Google can do this.

http://www.google.com/reader/shared/nick.iberianature

There's a feed to it in the middle column of Iberianature with the first x number of words
http://www.iberianature.com/

And in a different format on Naturaiberica which I think I prefer
http://iberianature.com/natura_iberica/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 25, 2010, 22:30 PM
Another in the Montjuic series:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/03/zooming-in-on-montjuic-castle-iii-spring/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on March 25, 2010, 22:46 PM
More great photography Lucy, I really like the angles up the wall combined with the vivid foreground interest.
The Hoopoe on the barbed wire reminds me of some sort of iconic image from a prisoner of war film, nature winning through inspite of everything else that is going on around it.

Regards
Steve
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 26, 2010, 10:56 AM
Hi Steve, I think nature in cities provides lots of interesting juxtapositions.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 13, 2010, 10:40 AM
A trip report after a visit to the Aiguamolls de l'Emporda, the wetlands reserve in the north of Catalunya:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/04/aiguamolls-de-lemporda-at-easter/   
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on April 14, 2010, 19:21 PM
Naughty Cetti's warbler  :) Your "the petals look like pink bonnets trailing in the current of a stream" reminds me of The Lady of Shallot. (http://www.pathguy.com/shalott.htm)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 15, 2010, 20:33 PM
Great poem - I'd never read it before. It conjures up a dream landscape.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 21, 2010, 21:55 PM
Saw some nice butterflies in Montseny at the end of March:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/04/butterflies-out-of-hibernation/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on May 04, 2010, 23:45 PM
Lucy and I started writing a paid monthly column called Wild Barcelona for the Barcelona Metropolitan about a year ago. After writing a few together Lucy took over writing them all, even though it still gives me a credit (despite my insistance to change this).

Anyway, members of the Lucy Fan Club will no doubt enjoy these last two choice pieces they've put up on their web. I particularly enjoyed the one on hoopoes

Quote
A woman comes out on the fire escape to smoke a cigarette. Nearby there’s a Judas tree: it’s seen better days and bears little foliage now. A hole gapes where a large branch was once lopped off. As the woman stands and talks on her mobile, there’s movement and two eyes appear at the hole

http://www.barcelona-metropolitan.com/topics/lucy_brzoska/index.html
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 01, 2010, 20:41 PM
I saw some interesting beasties on a recent walk in Montseny:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/06/a-walk-in-montseny/

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on June 02, 2010, 16:54 PM
I saw my first Violet limodore this year. First just in bud and wondered what the .......  :) Might have time to write about it soon!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 02, 2010, 21:05 PM
They look quite sinister when they are just a stem - no leaves, nothing green at all.  I'd never noticed them before.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on June 03, 2010, 13:36 PM
I suppose the particularly wet winter/spring has brought them up. This is what we first found.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 03, 2010, 19:14 PM
wow, they're tall!  have you gone back to see them in flower?

The rain certainly has brought up some unusual things in unexpected places - the subject of my next blog!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on June 03, 2010, 23:28 PM
Updated my Google Reader to include some highlights from iberianature (need to feed you in Lucy, too)

http://www.google.com/reader/shared/nick.iberianature
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on June 04, 2010, 23:33 PM
Iberianature is now on facebook just in case you've got even more time to waste

http://es-es.facebook.com/people/Iberianature-Nick/100001157354579
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 06, 2010, 13:37 PM
It's an outstanding spring for flowers this year:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/06/three-flowers-on-montjuic-part-2/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on June 06, 2010, 23:45 PM
Wow...an orchid on Montjuic. This must be extremely unusual...Never heard of one before. Have sent a message to The Centre d'Estudis de Montjuic...
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 18, 2010, 14:07 PM
Here's some more about the recent damselfly activity in the park, which has been mentioned on the forum.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/06/a-new-generation-of-damselflies/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on June 25, 2010, 09:33 AM
Beautiful little jewels.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 27, 2010, 19:42 PM
Yet another post on dragonflies - well, summer's here.  There'll probably be more coming up.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/06/black-tailed-skimmers-at-lunchtime/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on June 27, 2010, 21:17 PM
Well done Lucy another astute set of observations on my favourite 6 legged friends.

You can often tell the most successful males in the powder blue species by the fact that you can see where the females have repeatedly grasped his abdomen during copulation, leading to dark marks where the blue pruinosity has been worn away.

Great photo of the happy couple with the grand looking building in the background, it really puts the urban dragons in context.

Steve
 
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on July 03, 2010, 01:53 AM
Damn, that second photo is good Lucy! I love the way the Palau Reial background takes us from  apparant normality into a very strange, beautiful and almost frightening world, all going on just a few feet from where we walk...
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on July 03, 2010, 08:31 AM
Are you sure you have that the right way around Nick?!  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 04, 2010, 09:17 AM
More uncanny stuff - Bela Lugosi's favourite damselfly:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/07/collserola-gothic-calopteryx-haemorrhoidalis/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on July 04, 2010, 18:38 PM
Another well captured story board Lucy :clapping:
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on July 04, 2010, 20:43 PM
Lovely little story.  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 02, 2010, 20:10 PM
We're in peak butterfly season - I found some new species (new to me!), among other things, on a walk near BCN.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/08/walking-on-the-edge/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on September 13, 2010, 09:17 AM
I've put together a report of a trip to the Pyrenees this summer, with some random recollections.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/09/pyrenean-trip-report/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on September 13, 2010, 15:17 PM
A lovely and very informative post, and structured in an interesting way
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on September 13, 2010, 15:55 PM
Cracking newt, Lucy!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on September 15, 2010, 07:58 AM
I like the toad  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 03, 2010, 20:17 PM
An encounter with a wonderful beastie:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/11/close-encounter-on-montjuic-a-cone-head-mantis/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 14, 2010, 15:00 PM
Autumn's a lovely season in Collserola.

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/11/autumn-colours-in-collserola/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 26, 2010, 19:21 PM
A morning's birding on Montjuic:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2010/11/unusual-sightings-on-montjuic/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on November 27, 2010, 10:49 AM
Lovely Sparrowhawk!!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 28, 2010, 12:41 PM
Could it be a juvenile - brown-backed and "coarsely barred" (Collins)? 
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on November 30, 2010, 06:32 AM
A whole Pekin robin! I vividly remember the noisy but esquivo band in Collserola. Lovely Sparrowhawk too.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on February 13, 2011, 12:50 PM
Three birds who spend winter in Barcelona:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/02/three-winter-birds-in-barcelona/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 10, 2011, 09:28 AM
Lots of buzzing and whirring:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/03/zooming-in-on-montjuic-iv-early-insects/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on March 11, 2011, 22:01 PM
That's amazing Lucy, seeing a Hummingbird hawkmoth resting. I've only seen them flitting around, feeding very quickly. Then again, they don't usually appear here (or I don't notice them) until summer is well under way. Could it be part of their breeding pattern? Resting to emit pheramones?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 25, 2011, 21:17 PM
I did this walk earlier in April, during an early heat wave:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/04/a-walk-on-the-edge-spring/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Simon on April 26, 2011, 08:52 AM
Hi Lucy, Lisa, et al

It's curious that you should have reported the recent hot spell, Lucy, just as I was recalling the same in late September - great minds . . .?  :dancing:

http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2011/03/vall-de-gerber/ (http://iberianature.com/simonsblog/2011/03/vall-de-gerber/)

Regs

Simon


Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on May 20, 2011, 15:57 PM
It's very interesting in the undergrowth at the moment:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/05/in-the-jungle-mediterranean-insects/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: parthenope on May 20, 2011, 16:07 PM
Some great macro shots Lucy, love the Jewel Beetle composition.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on May 21, 2011, 19:48 PM
I love the anteater/weevil  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 04, 2011, 11:00 AM
An unforgettable walk in the Pyrenees:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/07/on-the-rocks-high-altitude-flora-in-the-eastern-pyrenees/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: glennie on July 06, 2011, 16:12 PM
Another lovely blog Lucy.

And such beautiful flowers!  :)
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on July 07, 2011, 10:35 AM
Hi Lucy
Lovely blog, sometimes it is like being there, without the hard slog
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 08, 2011, 13:54 PM
Hi Glen and Dave,
Thanks for the comments.
The sight of the flowers in such an extreme environment was incredible. My mind was blown!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on July 29, 2011, 21:14 PM
I've been snooping round the ponds on Montjuic -

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/07/iberian-blue-tailed-damselflies-on-montjuic/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on July 30, 2011, 00:14 AM
Sparrow and frog are tops Lucy!!! You must get an exhibition together one day
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 28, 2011, 11:02 AM
It's that time of the year again:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/08/close-encounter-with-charaxes-jasius-the-two-tailed-pasha/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on August 31, 2011, 09:45 AM
"...using a startlingly red proboscis, which I’ve never seen before (aren’t they usually black?). Presume you mean butterflies in general Lucy? Have you seen this list of Charaxes species (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charaxes_%28genus%29)?  :o Anyway, nice one!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 31, 2011, 10:42 AM
Hi Lisa,

I meant in the Two-tailed Pasha itself.  I can see that other members of this spectacular genus have their probosci in all kinds of colours - eg. red and green

This site has great close-ups of C. jasius, and refers to "its huge black proboscis"-

http://www.butterfliesoffrance.com/html/Charaxes%20jasius.htm

Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on August 31, 2011, 14:57 PM
I've learnt a new word - espiritrompa. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3JK-GEcNOs) In the video you can see the proboscis is more red than black even though the light is poor. Reading the blue print at the bottom of the page from this nature blog from Granada (http://biocostagranadina.blogspot.com/2010/10/la-mariposa-del-madrono.html) I'm wondering what was in your sandwich  :)
The butterflies of France website was recommended to me by a guy who dissects butterfly genitalia which makes me think the author should know what he's talking about. My books aren't much help either. Still, Jesús, Thomas or Andy or anyone else will be along soon........
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 31, 2011, 15:51 PM
Nice word!  Thanks for those links - interesting blog about alternative food plants. I consult Butterflies of France alot, because of its detailed descriptions - very helpful for guiding you round difficult Fritillary wings.

Perhaps the colour is just a variation that crops up from time to time.

Mature cheddar cheese! Sweat is clearly much tastier -  on a really hot day my friend had a Pasha stuck to her brow.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 09, 2011, 12:23 PM
Even in the city you can keep in touch with bird migration

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/10/birds-on-migration-in-barcelona/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 17, 2011, 18:10 PM
A world of spiders:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2011/12/a-diversity-of-spiders/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: nick on December 18, 2011, 22:40 PM
Are they all on Montjuic?
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 19, 2011, 11:29 AM
None of those were found on Montjuic! But that doesn't mean they are not there - Wasp spiders are there, for example.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 08, 2012, 12:09 PM
http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/03/when-winter-turns-to-spring/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on May 13, 2012, 16:58 PM
Nice time to be walking in Collserola:
http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/05/pollen-this-way/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 11, 2012, 10:30 AM
Watching Peregrine falcons on Montjuic:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/06/close-encounter-on-montjuic-peregrine-falcons/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on June 11, 2012, 13:51 PM
Hi Lucy
Lovely report and superb photos as usual, here we are witnessing daily encounters between the Black Kites and our resident Kestrels, its like Spitfires against JU 88´s. Very entertaining, but luckily no injuries so far, although it certainly puts the Kite off his fishing.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 12, 2012, 13:17 PM
Amazing! Especially if you are watching the drama from your terrace! I didn't know Black kites fished.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on June 13, 2012, 10:36 AM
Hi Lucy
I think being scavengers they take dead or ill fish of the surface, I have seen them do it several times, of course it is not spectacular like an Osprey, they only skim the surface, so far. But they cruise the river everyday either in ones or twos, probably a breeding pair, as last year they had 3 helpers, who I assume were youngsters.
The other spectacle at the moment is at dusk, when the Night Herons, start flying up and down, a flight of 13 the other day, they seem to have increased enormously, in numbers, this year
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 31, 2012, 14:00 PM
If summer is the time you take a holiday, hope it was a good one.  The real world of work beckons, and I think I'll appreciate these memories:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/08/a-couple-of-hours-to-kill-on-a-mountain/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lisa on September 06, 2012, 14:43 PM
Those little pearly moth eggs were exposed weren't they? Hope they survived predation.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 02, 2012, 11:10 AM
After many years of hoping, finally came across this lovely butterfly:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/11/the-plain-tiger-danaus-chrysippus-in-barcelona/

There's also a mini post about the recent crane migration:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/11/migration-of-cranes-autumn-2012/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on December 15, 2012, 11:03 AM

Happy chomping, slurping parakeets:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2012/12/what-do-barcelonas-parakeets-eat-in-autumn/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 19, 2013, 19:20 PM
A small tribute to ravens:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/01/strictly-come-raven-dancing/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 10, 2013, 13:52 PM
Romance is in the air in Barcelona:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/03/wild-couples-in-barcelona/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on May 05, 2013, 16:31 PM
Lively spring migration this year:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/05/wood-warbler-spring/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 14, 2013, 17:15 PM
I spotted a tiny, fully grown mantis the other day:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/08/close-encounter-on-collserola-dwarf-mantis/

Plus a post on extraordinary photos capturing flight patterns of birds as they cross Barcelona:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/08/flight-patterns-across-barcelona/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on August 14, 2013, 17:21 PM
Hi Lucy
Amazing Photos
It has been a while
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on August 28, 2013, 10:00 AM
Hi Dave, lovely to bump into you on the forum!  Just posted again on a gecko I walked past on Montjuic:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/08/zooming-in-on-montjuic-v-gecko/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on August 28, 2013, 17:12 PM
Hi Lucy
It has been a while since i was on the forum, but I am back now. love the photos of the Gecko.
regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: mazzie74 on October 13, 2013, 20:28 PM
Very interesting photo's,

Thanks,

Darin.
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on October 25, 2013, 16:11 PM
Some of the sights on Montjuic at the moment:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/10/zooming-in-on-montjuic-vi-autumn/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on October 30, 2013, 09:39 AM
Hi Lucy
Lovely report, as usual, here the Red Kites and Cormorants have returned the Blackcaps are calling from cover on the riverside, and our young Black Redstart is continuing to visit the terrace for his daily bath, in fact each year one youngster usually adopts our terrace, sometimes even roosting behind the chairs.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on November 28, 2013, 11:50 AM
A mini-post (from warmer days)

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2013/11/how-to-spot-a-praying-mantis/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on January 01, 2014, 17:12 PM
On the importance of holes . . .

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2014/01/zooming-in-on-montjuic-castle-the-importance-of-holes/

Happy New Year!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on January 02, 2014, 09:52 AM
Happy New Year, Lucy
Even in our relatively modern building in León we have holes, often left after kitchens have been renovated and old appliances removed, being up to 10 storeys up they are left unfilled from the outside, and provide ideal nest holes for the local birds, the Magpies also use them to hide food.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on February 28, 2014, 18:42 PM
My local friendly jay:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2014/02/a-jay-in-the-park/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Dave on March 01, 2014, 12:32 PM
Hi Lucy
Lovely report, how unusual to have such close contact with a Jay, unusually for a Corvid, they are very shy, and usually only seen as a fleeting glimpse.
Regards
Dave
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on March 01, 2014, 22:06 PM
Hi Dave, the jay's partner and offspring are both very shy.  This one seems to know his way around humans!
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on April 23, 2014, 09:50 AM
A mishmash of spring encounters on Montjuic:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2014/04/springtime-in-barcelona-montjuic/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Clive on April 23, 2014, 10:56 AM
Hey Lucy, great stuff... I haven't seen a pheasant for years! The shape of the Hoopoe always makes me chuckle... It is the most ridiculous and lovely bird.... poop, poop poop...

 :clapping:

 sign
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on May 25, 2014, 16:53 PM
Some common but beguiling butterflies:

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2014/05/zooming-in-on-butterflies-mating/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: lucy on June 22, 2014, 14:56 PM
New post on an interesting scene in an irrigation channel

http://iberianature.com/lucyblog/2014/06/viperine-snake-takes-on-large-water-frog/
Title: Re: Iberianature blogs
Post by: Petrea on June 22, 2014, 17:25 PM
A nice series, demonstrating the hard facts of nature!

 sign