Tagged with: Winter

Posts (23)

  1. As the milder weather continues, our wildlife is becoming increasingly confused with the fact that we are still actually in winter. Yesterday I visited Merthyr Mawr with my 2 year old son and his friend for a spot of 'dune surfing' on a snow sledge - hard work dragging/ carrying him back up t...

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  2. November was incredibly mild this year which has had a knock on effect on our wildlife in Wales. Lyndsey Maiden from the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales (WTSWW) has been in touch with some examples of unseasonal behaviour and sightings. Whilst our summer visitors have left us and our winter visitors such as fieldfares and redwings have arrived, it would seem that not all our wildlife is aware that winter is on the horizon. This November has been unseasonably warm which has meant that some animals such as bats and hedgehogs have delayed their winter hibernation. With plenty of insects still around this may not currently be a huge concern although a sudden drop in temperature may leave some animals out in the cold. Bats would normally be in hibernation by now but both pipistrelle and daubenton's bats have been seen flying around in Carmarthenshire and Swansea. Image by Amy Lewis. Bats would normally be hibernating at this time of year and yet WTSWW have received reports of a Daubentons bat in Swansea and Lyndsey Maiden of the Trust has seen pipistrelle bats flying in Carmarthenshire. The Trust has even received reports of frogs mating in Carmarthen. Many plants are still producing flowers, with sightings of greater stitchwort, red campion, knapweed, cow parsley and hogweed producing new growth and flowers. Southern hawker dragonflies and red admirals are still flying on sunny days as are wasps and other small invertebrates which would normally be dying off. A red admiral enjoying the November sunshine at Boverton. Image by Sue. You may have noticed that trees such as hazels are still keeping their leaves at the moment or even daffodils coming into flower. All of this unusual behaviour seems to be down to the unseasonably warm weather. There are indications that this is part of a longer term trend and whilst this is not the warmest November on record this is probably due to the El Nina effect cooling us down. The Wildlife Trusts are concerned about the robustness of wildlife being able to cope with an unpredictable climate. Our unusual weather will put pressures on nature's systems and it will take time to see how she copes. If you see any more unusual sightings please send your reports to WTSWW's Facebook page. December looks like a return to normality though with a wintry weather forecast for the week ahead and temperatures today struggling to get above 6° C for much of Wales.

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  3. Well first of all, a very Happy New Year to you all! Most of us ended up with a white Christmas, although no fresh snow fell in Wales on 25 December. We haven't got all the figures in yet but it looks like last month was the coldest in Wales for at least 100 years and for central England, th...

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  4. My grandad always looked forward to today - the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere, because he knew that after today, the days would slowly get longer as the sun moved north again. There was also a lunar eclipse this morning - the first in three years and...

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  5. Well, it looks as if we've seen the worst of the snow for the time being but we could be in for a little bit more on Wednesday. Aside from all the chaos the snow causes; it also dramatically alters the landscape - transforming the mundane into something very dramatic. I found myself getting repeatedly lost on Saturday morning trying to escape Cardiff and get onto the slippery M4. As I walked to my van, I felt like I was in a disaster movie - with abandoned cars and snow everywhere I looked, but no people! The normally busy roads were eerily quiet aside from the occasional jack-knifed delivery lorry or car skidding to escape the snow. Once I'd dug my van out and got going, the fun really began. I've never missed so many turns in all my life but all familiarity vanished. Everything looked completely different and with road signs covered in snow, it made navigating, let alone driving - very tricky indeed. *If you're on an icy hill, keep a steady speed all the way up - don't brake or stop on the steepest section* Sorry, but I had to get that off my chest! You've all been very busy, getting out and about and taking some amazing photos, so here are a few taken during the recent snow flurries: A dramatic snow scene taken by Nigel Lewis. Merthyr Mawr bathed in glorious sunshine at noon on Monday by Andrew Owen. A temperature reading of -17C in an car on Monday morning in Bala town centre by Keith Humph. Pontsticill Reservoir on Sunday, taken from the Brecon Mountain Railway Station by Tim Borman of Church Village. A swan finds out the hard way in Roath Park lake! Photo by Jo Bird in Cardiff That's it for now. Keep them coming - wales.nature@bbc.co.uk or add your favourite snaps to our Flickr group. Thanks Gull

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  6. With all the cold weather and heavy frosts; rivers across Wales are turning to ice. Here is the River Ely in Penarth as you've never seen it before (or perhaps you have? Let us know and leave a comment below) Tina Crocker sent in this amazing shot of the River Ely in Penarth - compl...

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  7. Last night there was another widespread frost with temperatures at Trawscoed in Ceredigion dipping to minus 9 Celsius! The cold and icy weather is not everyone's cup of tea but the frost is pretty to look at. If you're fed up with the cold and scraping the frost off your car windscreen - you'...

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  8. The CCW are asking us all to lend a helping hand to our wildlife and in particular the birds, during this cold snap. Birds use up precious energy flying away from us when spooked, so please bare that in mind next time you want to get a closer look at something. As the ground freezes over, food becomes incredibly scarce and our feathered friends begin to move into areas that we humans also like to frequent such as parks and gardens. Wildfowl (ducks, geese and swans) in particular will be looking for areas of open water on ponds, lakes and reserves. Due to the more severe weather in the north and east of Britain, birds will also be flying west to areas in Wales to try and find places where they can still feed. This little chap flew into a house looking for warmth and shelter and remained on the owners hand for about 4 minutes before flying away. I've seen robins do this before but never blue tits, which are normally very timid birds - so it just goes to show how cold and vulnerable our birds are at the moment. Image by Janjo195 on Flickr. Remember to leave fresh warm water out whenever you can. If you leave cold water out then it freezes over very quickly, so I tend to use luke warm water and place it somewhere the birds will feel safe e.g. on top of a hedge or wall rather than on the lawn. There were some great feeding tips from the RSPB in my last blog on this topic so take a read if you have time. Gull RSPB Wales website

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  9. Last weekend, winter eased its grip with a slow thaw. Daytime temperatures rose as high as 6 or 7 Celsius on the coast but with rain falling onto frozen ground, some roads and pavements turned into ice rinks. Last night it turned colder again and with clear skies, temperatures fell as low ...

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  10. It's very icy again today which seems to sum up the weekend weather quite well really. I was surprised at how heavy a frost we had on the coast during Saturday and Sunday but at least it was dry with blue sky and sunshine - in SE Wales anyway. My windscreen wiper fluid is supposed to be go...

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