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Hebridean Imaging

Hebridean Imaging


Down South…

25th July 2013 – Left the islands yesterday, ferry to Oban and then an eight hour drive down to Shropshire. Lovely to see all the family again!! But so many people and cars. I have my usual shell-shocked feeling going into the huge supermarkets – wandering around in a daze thinking “wow, it’s so big, there is so much stuff and so much choice!

Civilization (?)

Civilization (?)

27th July 2013 – The Sitting Tree. At least 4 generations of us have enjoyed a sit down underneath this impressive tree which is in the village where I was brought up. We had a wander down the quiet country lanes with dad – the hedgerows were butterfly central – we saw 10 different species!

The Sitting Tree

The Sitting Tree

Nan and my cousin Tracey sitting under The Sitting Tree (mid 1960s at a guess)

My grandmother and my cousin Tracey on The Sitting Tree (mid 1960s at a guess)

28th July 2013 – Had a walk around the village this evening and sneaked into the churchyard to look over the wall to see what was happening with the “big house”. It was for sale earlier this year but sadly no lottery win was forthcoming and I was unable to afford the million quid it would have cost to buy it 🙂 Mind you everything about it screamed “money pit” and right enough there are now major renovations going on with a new roof currently being done.

A bit of history:-

The Hall stands on the site of the original manor house, which dated back to 1066 and is described in the Doomsday book as belonging to the Earls of Shrewsbury who retained it until it was confiscated by the Crown from the outlawed Earl Robert Montgomery. At this point King Henry I gave the hall to his wife, Queen Adeliza. Rebuilt in 1628 (as marked on the chimney stack) by the Earls of Shrewsbury, refaced and extended in 1750 to include a seven bay Georgian front. From the early eighteen hundreds the hall was owned by the Cludde family and the Earls of Powis.

More recently the Hall has been in the hands of the Military. Leased by the War department from Colonel Henry Herbert in 1948 and subsequently bought in 1958 and has been the home of many Generals and other high ranking Army officers ever since.

Ever since I can remember, the village fete was held in the grounds of the house – that was the only time you were allowed in. I was always fascinated with the giant leaves of a plant in there – i’ve recently realised that this was giant rhubarb (Gunnera manicata) an invasive non-native species!

The Big House

The Big House

29th July 2013 – Had a very exciting day with my daughter today, she was shopping for a wedding dress and wanted me and her future mother-in-law, Jean, to go along with her. We found The Dress and it looked fabulous! There’s still over twelve months to wait until the wedding though…

We ended up in Shrewsbury, i love this town, it’s tiny winding backstreets fascinate me. This one is called Barrack’s Passage, and is located off the Wyle Cop.

Barracks Passage, Shrewsbury

Barracks Passage, Shrewsbury

Off to Gibraltar tomorrow, better do my last minute packing…

Sweet Gale Moth

Things have been pretty slow recently with regards to moth-trapping – for almost all of the last month there has been some north in the wind making it pretty cold.

Just 7 Hebrew Characters and 3 Red Chestnuts plus we were very happy to find the nationally scarce Sweet Gale Moth in the trap – a moth we haven’t seen before. The County Moth Recorder tells us that it is only the second location here in the hebrides that the moth has been recorded at.

Wild Places blog moths outer hebrides

Sweet Gale Moth

Our first Lapwing chicks of the year seen at Stoneybridge this morning :) and we managed to catch and ring them. There were also 22 Whimbrel between Stoneybridge and Howbeg. The King Eider was not at Rubha Ardvule first thing this morning but there were still 23 pale-bellied Brents still on the beach plus our first Arctic Tern of the summer.

A quick walk around at North Locheynort and we found an ant that we hope our friend Rhian can identify. Rhian is currently doing her PhD on ants see this article about her work with ants and their connection with the endangered Large Blue Butterfly: also more on this fascinating subject at

ant outer hebrides

Unidentified ant (Myrmica spp.)

The Herons are busy nesting in the area as well, this youngster was seen skulking around in the vegetation – it seems to be old enough to go walkabout but not yet big enough to be able to fly.

grey heron outer hebrides

Young Grey Heron

grey heron outer hebrides

Adult Grey Heron

There was also a small flock of 8 Siskins, quite a few Willow Warblers and a Chiffchaff around the wooded area.

We counted quite a few Green-veined White butterflies that were in the warmer, more sheltered areas.

butterfly outer hebrides

Green-veined White butterfly