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Long Coastal Walks And A Flat Tyre



On a recent trip to Hope Cove in South Devon we were astounded at the night sky. I’ve not seen the milky way since I was young, but it showed extremely well due to the lack of light pollution. We were also treated to shooting stars and an array of constellations, which were impressive in the early hours of the morning (about 0430), along with a very vocal tawny owl.

During our coastal walk from Hope Cove (we headed towards Bolt Tail and onwards to Bloberry Down, then back to the village), we came across a nice fall of wheatears (over 20), accompanying them were a couple of whinchat, along with several family parties of resident stonechats. Overhead were a couple of ravens, house martins, sand martins and swallows, but best of all there was a single swift, which was wonderful as it was 1st September, and its always good to see a swift in September, even if it was the 1st!!

There were also good numbers of yellowhammers and skylarks, but unfortunately no cirl buntings, which we have seen in this location in the past.

There were gannets diving offshore, which was reassuring considering the amount that have unfortunately succumbed to the recent outbreak of bird flu this year. Again, in the past, we have seen seals and dolphins from this coastline, but unfortunately due to lack of time due to Tracey driving over a large stone and popping the tyre (which is another story!!), we didn’t do as much wildlife spotting as on previous visits.

On walking back down to the village to go and meet up with our friends who own a bistro in Hope Cove, we walked past a patch of red velarian. Tracey commented on us seeing a hummingbird hawkmoth in this patch of velarian a few years back, and ironically within a few seconds one appeared and showed well for a minute or so, before moving on.

So, if you ever find yourself in Hope Cove, we can highly recommend the coastal walk heading towards Salcombe, but just be careful of the single track roads and rouge rocks in the road!

Written by Tracey and Mark

Equipment used, leica 8x32(Mark), and Swarovski 8x25 and Sony RX10iv (Tracey).

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