Promoting observation, free range exploration, sense of place and citizen science, through the field notes of a naturalist.

Monday, 22 June 2015


Parking opposite the Lamb and Fox public house I was once again struck by Abergavenny's mountainous vista. Under feet was the first flowering wild thyme and wall pepper. Toward Pwll du there were a small noisy group of youths riding a variety of Heath Robinson vehicles. A scrambler bike, something a lot smaller - akin to one of those tiny pedal cycles circus acts used to ride - and a truncated quad looking thing belching smoke that drifted over the heads of a nearby group of grazing animals. A more mature off road enthusiast emerged from over the horizon that is Canada Tips. Passing close by, there was no number plate on view so probably no insurance either. Nonetheless he joined the highway for a short distance before pulling into the pub for a pint of best scrumpy no doubt. This is modern day lawlessness, untouchable recreation in the peri-urban environment.

Despite the blue skies there was a keen wind that kept active wildlife under wraps. A female wheatear was in alarm call mode as I negotiated the rough terrain. Where the valley narrowed I entered a tyre strewn landscape where hundreds of the black round things are being enveloped by vegetation. 

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