Of Dogs and Fungi

Sunday 1st October to Saturday 7th October 2017-10-15

Having said this post is from the 1st October I don’t actually have any photos from that day, so the first photos are from Monday 2nd when we went over to Upton Heath for our walk as usual. I took the EOS 6D with the 100mm Macro lens attached, and I’m glad I did as I got some really nice photos. Unfortunately, if you suffer from arachnophobia the first one isn’t quite so nice as its an Orb Spider.

Orb spider

That photos was taken along the old railway line. We walked onto the pond and Teddy was really pleased to find some doggie friends there. It all started with a meet and greet.

Meet and greet at the pond

We met Max, the Golden Retriever.

Max the Golden Retriever

And Buzz, the Viszla who was staying with Max temporarily.

Buzz the Vizsla

Teddy and Buzz had a good time playing.

Teddy and Buzz

And then there was Tig, one of our staffy friends.

Tig

After a good game we went our separate ways and I walked Teddy round through the old pits.

Teddy in the old pits

On the lower heath the Fly Agaric are still in evidence.

Flly agaric

Although these had been kicked over.

Broken

As usual Teddy went into the little pool by the small boardwalk for a drink.

Teddy by the boardwalk

And then posed for me.

Teddy

After that we made our way home.

On Tuesday we started the day, as every day, with breakfast, and Teddy was a happy dog when he found out I’d finished the yogurt and he could have the pot. He soon got stuck in.

Nose in the trough

For our walk we went to Canford Heath and as it was a lovely sunny day I, once again, took the EOS 6D with the 100mm lens on it. Although it is a macro lens it is also excellent for portraits, which is why it’s great for taking photos of dogs, like this one of Teddy.

Teddy

Fungi are also in evidence on Canford Heath, like this one, although I’m not too sure what it is.

Fungi

As we walked through the woods I found this huge Cauliflower Fungus.

Cauliflower fungus

And these Razor Strop, or Birch Bracket Fungi.

Razor Strop Fungi

I also spotted this pretty little feather, suspended on some blades of grass.

Feather

There were more fungi when we left the woods. Firstly this Russula

Russula

And then this Panther Cap

Panther Cap

And lastly from Tuesday, a photo of Teddy surveying the heath as we walked back to the car.

Teddy surveys the heath

Jumping ahead to Friday we were again on Upton Heath. Firstly we went to the pond.

Teddy in the pond

And then, after Teddy had had a drink and a paddle, we headed towards the old pits. En route we met the cows.

We met the cows

You can see that at some point that one has had a nasty injury on its side.

On the lower heath we met several dogs. Firstly there was Oscar, a Border Terrier.

Oscar

And then we met a lady with 4 small dogs, including this 12 week old Chihuahua puppy.

12 week old Chihuahua pup

At this point I put Teddy on the lead. As the lady said, he might have thought it was was a rat! He was really good with it, though, and very gentle, so I don’t think I need have worried. And this, was the pup’s father.

The pup's dad

While we were talking our friend Janet came along with her lurcher, Jake.

Our friend Jake

After a long chat we walked on round and, as usual, Teddy went in the pond by the small boardwalk where he was once again searching for something under the water.

Teddy is searching under the water again

When we got to the Roman Road I was pleased to see that there was another small fungus growing on the tree stump by the stream.

Fungi

While we were there I took the opportunity to take a photo looking along the Roman Road while the leaves on the trees are still green. They won’t be there much longer.

The trees haven't turned along the Roman Road yet

The Virginia Creeper along the path in Creekmoor has turned though, and has produced beautiful Autumn colours.

Autumn Colours

I don’t have any photos from our walk on Saturday, but first thing in the morning the plumber arrived to fix our leaking stopcock. And do you remember that lovely new kitchen we had installed 10 months ago? Well, today part of it had to come apart again!

My new kitchen is in pieces! Bits of kitchen fill my small sitting room

I’m pleased to say that it’s all fixed and back together again.

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Fungi at last!

Monday 25th September to Saturday 20th September 2017

Well I say Monday, but actually there aren’t any photos from Monday. On Tuesday, however, work started to remove our monster hedge from the front garden. It had just got too big to maintain and anyway, it was starting to die.

Work starts to remove the monster hedge

Progress was much quicker than I expected.

End of day 1 and a lot of the monster hedge has gone

Work continued apace on Wednesday.

Day 2 and there's only a small amount of hedge left

Come Thursday morning we were waiting for the stump grinder.

Awaiting stump grinding on day 3

I thought it would take ages, but it took a little over an hour – in fact I missed it as I was walking Teddy, so there are no photos.

For our walk on Thursday I took Teddy over to Canford Heath where the fungi are finally starting to appear: like this little chap.

Lone fungus

I also found some wax caps.

Wax Caps

The walk wasn’t bad, but it was pretty overcast as you can see from this view looking across Poole.

An overcast day on Canford Heath

There’s also a photo of Teddy at bedtime today, which I’ve entitled Sleeping Beauty.

Sleeping Beauty

On Friday we went over to Upton Heath as usual. It was another overcast day so I only took my phone. However, as on Canford Heath the fungi are now appearing. Here are some Fly Agaric.

Fly Agaric

And another member of the Amanita family, the Panther Cap.

Amanita pantherina

Along the Roman Road I found these little fungi growing on top of an old tree stump.

Top of a tree stump

And, of course, we mustn’t forget Teddy, who spent some time trying to dislodge a small tree in the little pool alongside the boardwalk

Teddy tries to dislodge a small tree

In the end he contented himself with just chewing it.

On Saturday afternoon we were back on Upton Heath again, and once again it was a bit of a grey day.

A grey day on Upton Heath

We walked up the Roman Road, out onto the heath and across to the viewpoint and then down the hill. After that we crossed the old railway line and walked round the lower heath, which is where the Fly agaric are to be found.

Fly Agaric

Fly Agaric Fly Agaric

And did I mention that they finished the new fence yesterday? It was quite late when they finished so I took the photo today after our walk.

The new fence is up!

We’re really pleased with it, as are the neighbours fortunately.

Margaret Green Animal Rescue Country Fayre

Sunday 24th September 2017

On Sunday Margaret Green Animal Rescue held their annual Country Fayre out at Church Knowle. Margaret Green is the rescue we got Teddy from, and to support their cause, and because Church Knowle is in such a beautiful setting in the Purbeck Hills, we took Teddy there. It wasn’t a very nice day, though, and we eventually had rain. We also had a problem with Teddy who has decided he doesn’t like travelling in the car for more than about 10 minutes and so he gets anxious and whines and yaps. As the trip to Church Knowle is around 25 minutes this presented us with a bit of a challenge!

Anyway, this time I concentrated on photos of some of the dogs there. So we have a happy staffy.

Happy Staffy

A rather stunning staffy.

What a stunner

A beautiful English Bull Terrier (she was just adorable).

Beautiful English Bull Terrier

A very fluffy German Shepherd puppy, who just wanted to play with every dog she saw.

GSD Puppy

A very gentle whippet.

Gentle Whippet

A lovely looking Cocker Spaniel.

Cocker Spaniel

And a Border Collie who’s been there,seen it, done it.

It's all too much for some

There were also birds of prey there. Like this Russian Steppe Eagle.

Russian Steppe Eagle

This Tawny Owl.

Tawny Owl

And this very cute Little Owl.

Little Owl

There was also a demonstration using a Harris Hawk.

Harris Hawk Harris Hawk

And, of course, I took some photos of Chris and Teddy. Firstly the more conventional one.

Chris and Teddy

And then a slightly more unusual photo of the two of them.

Chris and Teddy

And just a couple more from Sunday since Church Knowle is the place where Margaret Green houses all the rescues other than dogs. So here is a goose.

Goose

And a couple of sheep in the rain.

Just hanging out

Teddy was a nightmare on the way home. I tried sitting in the back seat to be close to him, which helped a bit. I also gave him a peanut butter stuffed Kong, which kept him quiet for a while. We’re hoping that it’s a phase that’s going to pass.

What to photograph?

Sunday 17th September to Saturday 23rd September 2017

Well it’s been another week with few days when I’ve taken photos. The reason has been not very good weather combined with, dare I say it, a lack of things to photograph. That is a terrible thing for someone who professes to be a photographer to say, I know, but it’s that time of year when summer is over, autumn hasn’t yet begun and everything is a bit tired and dirty looking. I can’t even find any fungi to photograph this year!

So on Monday, although I took the camera over Upton Heath, I didn’t really think the couple of photos I took were up to much. Tuesday, though, I had another go at taking Teddy out to Badbury Rings (you may recall last week’s aborted attempt where he whined so much in the car). Well he whined today too, but nowhere near as much so we actually made it to our destination.

It started really well for Teddy: he met a 9 month old GSD and they had a great run chasing each other. So Teddy was tired when we headed up the hill to the north of the Rings. As you can see, the harvesting is pretty much over.

The harvest is in

And the Old Man’s Beard is living up to its name.

Old Man's Beard

I quite like this shot of the seedheads against the blue sky.

Seedheads

Rather than walk all round the back of the Old Oak Wood today I cut across the front as Teddy was quite tired. Which meant that I got this photo of one of the old, fallen oak trees.

Fallen oak

Here’s a slightly different view of Kings Down Farm.

King Down Farm

And one of it nestled between the hills.

Nestled behind the hill

Walking back up the hill towards the Rings there were more seedheads. I’m quite pleased with these photos.

Seed Pods Seed Pods

And we came across another Red Admiral Butterfly.

Red Admiral on a Blackberry Flower

We walked round through High Wood where I was taken by the effect of the water droplets on this sycamore sapling.

Rain on a sycamore sapling

And then we walked on back round to the Rings. They seem to have removed the cows from Rings, no doubt in preparation for putting the sheep in there, so today for the first time I let Teddy stay off the lead as we walked back to the car. Here he’s trying to escape from the photo.

Teddy's in a hurry

And here’s another photo of him trotting along.

Teddy

And lastly from our visit to Badbury Rings, a lovely little scabacious flower.

Scabacious

On Wednesday morning I went to visit my Dad, and then in the afternoon I took Teddy over to Canford Heath. As you can see he was very pleased to be out on his walk.

Teddy is happy to be out on his walk

There was a lot of cloud around, as you can see from this view across to the old tip, but it was surprisingly mild and for once we didn’t get wet.

Looking towards the old tip

And here’s Teddy again on South Walk.

Teddy on South Walk

On Saturday I took Teddy on a long walk all around Upton Heath. I thought we’d go there again before the paths get too wet and muddy and as Teddy can be off-lead this time. We started by going up the Roman Road as usual, where the sweet chestnuts are starting to fall. Max would have been so happy. He loved hunting for sweet chestnuts.

It's Sweet Chestnut time - Max would have been a happy dog

We walked out onto the heath, up to the Viewpoint and then headed to the path below the tip. On one of the boardwalks a Common Darter landed in front of us.

Common Darter

Further on round, under some trees, I found these boletus fungi.

Boletus

Over near the Upton Bypass we met the cows and Teddy had to go over and investigate one that was lying down (no photo though, I’m afraid). And then we found this pretty little Common Centuary.

Common Centuary

We turned onto the lower heath and I was surprised to find this Cauliflower fungus (surprised as I have never come across one on Upton Heath before).

Cauliflower Fungus

And lastly for this week, a portrait of Teddy, taken on the boardwalk.

A portrait of Teddy

Rain then some sunshine

Sunday 10th September to Saturday 16th September 2017

Yes, we went over to Upton Heath for our walk on Sunday and we got wet again! Although it wasn’t as bad as yesterday my walking boots decided enough was enough and let water, so I came home with wet feet. Teddy wasn’t particularly happy about the state of affairs either.

Wet again! Teddy's not very happy

Monday was a good day – we didn’t get wet! And on Tuesday we actually had sunshine for our walk on Canford Heath. Here is Teddy, backlit by the sun.

Backlit on Canford Heath

And letting me know that all this photo-taking malarkey can get a bit boring.

Well this is boring!

When we do get sunshine a lot of Red Admiral butterflies are taking advantage, and we saw this lovely one as we headed down towards Knighton Heath.

Red Admiral Butterfly

I also spotted quite a large fungi and was trying to get a photo of it, but Teddy thought he’d take a leaf our of Max’s book and photobomb the shot.

Teddy takes a leaf out of Max's book and learns to photobomb

We continued on round and Teddy met a young Cocker Spaniel for the second time and they had a really good play. After which, of course, Teddy had to find the nearest puddle in which to cool down.

Teddy poses for Tongue out Tuesday

I particularly like this photo of him.

Time to cool down in a puddle

Needless to say he got out covered in mud!

Tuesday would have been Jezebel’s 10th birthday, so the day was tinged with sadness. But she loved cake, so in her honour I made a chocolate marble cake in the afternoon which Chris and I have been enjoying. This photo of Jez was taken on her birthday last year.

Jez on her 9th Birthday

On Wednesday I went to Dad’s in the morning as usual. I am pleased to say he has suffered no ill effects as a result of his fall last week, other than a very sore thumb where he cut it. In the afternoon I took Teddy over to Canford Heath, although I didn’t take any photos as once again it looked as though it could tip down with rain at any minute. After our walk we dropped round to Pat’s to take her her birthday presents: she will be 97 on Thursday.

On Thursday Teddy and I headed out to Badbury Rings for our walk. We didn’t get that far, though, as Teddy decided to whine and bark in the back of the car. Instead I called into Kingston Lacy which was closer.

Unfortunately the main part of the Woodland Walk is closed.

No Woodland Walk for us today

We did manage to do one small loop in the woods though, and then headed back past the house to the gardens. This view of the house was taken as we were walking back from the Woodland Walk.

Kingston Lacy House

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before but in the woods in one part of the gardens they are using pigs to clear the undergrowth. They’ve always been too far away for me to get a photo before, but today they were by the fence. Here is the big one (I think it might be a Gloucester Old Spot, but I can’t actually see any spots so I might be wrong).

Clearing the undergrowth in the gardens the natural way

And here is one of the Kunekunes.

This Kunekune is hoping to be fed a few apples

He came over to the fence as there is a shoot there. You can buy apples and feed the pigs. Sadly I didn’t have 50p on me for the apples, so he had to go hungry.

Over in the Kitchen Garden the dahlias are looking lovely.

Dahlia

There was supposed to be an orchid flowering there somewhere but I couldn’t find it. I did find the little autumnal scene in one of the outhouses though.

Autumn's harvest in the Kitchen Garden

And one final shot of the house as we walked back to the car.

Kingston Lacy House

On Friday we walked over Upton Heath again and although I took the camera we spent time walking round with a dog walker so I didn’t take any photos. I did take the camera when we went on Saturday though, despite the forecast of rain. There was a very misty and moody view over Poole Harbour, looking towards Arne.

A misty view across the heath

And yes, we got wet, but not very. Just a couple of fairly light showers. So I’ll leave you with a panorma of the heath and hope that the forecast is right and we will not have a few days without rain.

Panorma across Upton Heath

In which I get very excited

Sunday 3rd September to Saturday 9th September 2017

But before I get to the reason for my excitement I will start with a walk on Canford Heath on Wednesday 6th September (note the gap in photos due to more poor weather – although sadly that doesn’t mean a gap in Teddy’s walks!). The weather was still threatening on Wednesday, but I took the camera and for a change decided to park in Asda and walk Teddy up the Redbrick Path. This was the first time Teddy had experienced the Redbrick Path (I haven’t been for a couple of years) and he loved it. He especially loved chasing the squirrels that he found there!

Once we turned onto the heath we met our Labradoodle friend Milo.

Our friend Milo

Isn’t he a cutie? I love his little white beard. I say he’s a Labradoodle, but I normally refer to him as a Labradoodleoodle, as one parent was a Labardoodle and the other a Poodle. Sadly he was on the lead at the end of his walk today, so he and Teddy didn’t get to play.

We walked on round the heath and I was really surprised to come across a caterpillar.

Late caterpillar

It must be very late for them, although I found another a couple of days later in the garden.

And finally for today, one of my favourite trees that I haven’t photographed in a while.

One of my favourite trees

I’m pleased to say we actually managed our walk without getting wet!

And so onto the reason I was so excited. On Thursday morning I had to go over to my Dad’s again as he had had a fall. Fortunately he wasn’t too badly hurt and after getting him checked over by my cousin’s husband, who is an A&E nurse, I was able to come home and take Teddy to Wareham Forest in the afternoon.

We had just met a lady and her dogs when I walked on a spotted a young Smooth Snake in the path.

Young Smooth Snake

It may not seem like much but it is the UK’s rarest snake and I was so excited to find it. I managed to keep Teddy out of the way while I took a couple of photos.

Young Smooth Snake

Young Smooth Snake

After which it slithered off into the undergrowth.

And so onto Saturday. Showers were forecast for our walk on Saturday afternoon. We went over to Upton Heath as usual and walked up the Roman Road. As we came down the hill there were a few spits and spots but nothing to worry about. When we got to the pits, though, the heavens opened. I headed for a tree in the old pits and tried to shelter there, but it was pretty hopeless.

This bit of video gives you a clue as to what it was like. Those ‘streams’ weren’t there a couple of minutes beforehand. Oh, and the shouting is the lads who were riding their bikes around the pits at the time the rain started – you can see one going to join his friends under another tree.

I’m getting tired of all this wet weather.

A walk on Upton Heath

Saturday 26th August 2017

Saturday was a lovely, hot, sunny day (unusual for an August Bank Holiday weekend) and in the afternoon Teddy and I went for our walk over Upton Heath.

We started off by walking up the Roman Road, in the shade.

Looking through the old railway bridge

Next to the entrance we often take onto the heath I found this buddleia growing wild. I loved the colour, and realised there was a hover fly on it too.

Hover fly on buddleia

By the time we had got half-way down the hill across the heath Teddy was hot, especially as he had been playing with a dog while we were on the Roman Road, so guess who had to cool down in the very muddy gully.

Never mind the mud - Teddy needs to cool down

And guess who was somewhat less than clean when he got out.

Two-tone dog has a shake

After he had cooled down I took Teddy away from the path and into the valley that runs between the main path and the Roman Road. I hadn’t walked him there before. This was the view looking back up the hill.

Looking across Upton Heath

He enjoyed the change of scenery, especially as this area boasts lots of rabbits (which fortunately were all tucked up in their beds).

And so onto the pond, where I was able to wash Teddy off. As you can see from the photo, he seems to have found something interesting in there again.

Teddy's found something interesting in the pond again

My plan didn’t work that well though, as you can see from the final photo, taken on the lower heath of Teddy playing with a stick (something I’ve not seen him do before).

Teddy's found himself a stick

Shower time when we got home!