Letter from Lundy

Springtime is my favourite season on Lundy and there are signs all around us which tell us it s well on its way! The westerly winds are easing, the breeze is warming and young green shoots are appearing all over the island, tiny indicators that new life

Springtime is my favourite season on Lundy and there are signs all around us which tell us it's well on its way! The westerly winds are easing, the breeze is warming and young green shoots are appearing all over the island, tiny indicators that new life is about to burst on to the scene. I saw my first snowdrop the other day and the bluebells won't be far behind. But it's not just the flowers which are gearing up - the island is getting busier with feathered visitors as birds prepare for the breeding season, seemingly practising their songs over and over, so they are sure to attract a mate. Male skylarks have already begun their enchanting song flights: tirelessly performing elaborate trills and impressive flight sequences - they soar high in theMelodiousair then parachute glide to the ground. An impressive bid to establish territories and stake claim to areas of the island where they can woo the females for the coming breeding season. I never tire of listening to their melodious calls and come the peak season they can be heard literally all around the island - it is quite magical.As the seas calm and quieten, we can turn our attention to marine life sightings again which often drop off throughout the winter as stormy seas and strong winds make spotting cetaceans (porpoises, dolphins and whales) quite difficult. Recently, a flurry of excitement occurred when what was thought to be a large cetacean, possibly a whale, was seen in the landing bay, but actually turned out to be a rather large bottlenose dolphin. These glimpses of marine life remind me to get out and spend a bit of time just looking out to sea, scanning the waters - you never know what's out there. The majority of the sightings in the UK come from the public and it's important that if you encounter marine wildlife that you report it. Your sightings are really valuable and help to give us a better understanding of exactly what is around our coastline. Go online and report your sightings to the Sea Watch Foundation who collate and report information about the UK marine wildlife - do your bit for wildlife research at: www.seawatchfoundation.org.uk A good opportunity for a bit of wildlife watching is onboard the Oldenburg when sailing over to the island - she has recently made her maiden voyage of the year even though it was only a stores run to replenish the island stocks. She's currently being spruced up, painted and polished as the boat season is virtually upon us and soon we'll be welcoming her to our shores as often as four times a week throughout the summer. Hopefully this year we'll see some better weather and even more of you can enjoy our lovely island in the sunshine! Fingers crossed!Sophie Wheatley,Assistant Lundy Warden.


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