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Showing posts from 2019

The Reasons Behind The Excessive Rainfall

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Out & About
Do you remember that old stone bridge that we crossed atMirtos last month? The one where I suggested that whheelchair users would probably find it more practical to use the adjoining concreted ford? No longer; the ford was washed away last week in the fifth major deluge to hit our island this year. We have had more rain so far this year than the total rainfall for any of the preceding ten years.
I thought that we'd take a walk down to the cliffs today to see how Ferma, which lies between Myrtos and Makry Gialos, has fared. But as we wend our way down through the olive groves I'll try to explain what is happening and it is down to our old friend (or new enemy) climate change. Simply put, the temperature of the Earth is slowly rising but it is not constant around the globe. Here in south east Crete we are just under a degree celcius warmer than we were ten years ago which is much greater than the global average. Warmer air holds more moisture and it has a tendancy …

No Place Like Home

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Out & About


Spring is here at last. I don't know about you but it seems a lot longer than thirteen weeks since the winter solstice. One thing about spring is that life is so abundant that you don't have to go far to look for it. Come with me into the olive grove next door and I'll show you. Absolutely bursting with blooms: Poppies, Pimpernels, Mallow and Medicago, Shepherd's Needles and Vetch. I can see at least fourteen different flowers from here but the one I'm particularly interested in today is the ubiquitous Garland Daisy as they really attract the insects. Look, we've got a Mirid Bug, a little black Crabronid wasp, a hoverfly and three different beetles. Not a bad little haul.

Now, I need your help. As I was coming back from Ierapetra on Saturday (March 23rd) I stopped off at the beach to have a look at the pink carpet of Catchfly that adorned the upper levels and I found myself surrounded by hundreds of Painted Ladies. These amazing little butterflies…

Mirtos River

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The sun is shining and there's hardly a breath of wind. Drop everything, cancel all plans, we're going out! With all the rain we've had recently (and more forecast in the coming days) good walking weather is at a premium. A morning stroll by the Myrtos river followed by a spot of lunch in the town is definitely in order.
Out & About

The birds are certainly enjoying themselves. Apart from a murder of hooded crows mustering in that gum tree over there, discussing goodness knows what, I can hear the descending trills of chaffinches, a twittering of goldfinches, the long, drawn out 'dzeee' of a greenfinch and the sharp 'tak-tak' of a male stonechat. And sitting pretty as a picture on that bush to our left is a female stonechat cocking an ear to the male whilst keeping a beady eye on us.




It's nice to see a few more wildflowers coming into bloom. The Branched Asphodels are a sure sign that spring can't be too far away and the Common Lantana (or Bacon &am…

The Art of Nature

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Out & About
This week I'm taking you up to a little place in the hills called Psychro but instead of hiking up to the church of St. George as most people do (and indeed, as we did back in October 2016 – see Into The Woods), we're going for a short stroll down the valley on the other side of the road to look at the sometimes overlooked beauties of nature.



Starting with the obvious, sublime winter landscapes can be found almost anywhere on a crisp winter's day. This is especially so if you have a background of blue skies and mountains, an interesting old man-made structure in the mid ground (in this case a long defunct watermill) and you are looking at it through a trio of stark and leafless trees.



Landscapes are a great favourite with artists and photographers, as are the common 'pretties' such as flowers, birds and butterflies but take a closer look at any damp wood or rock and you will find an almost limitless array of interesting shapes among the world of the mo…