Tag Archives: gnats

A Brief Visit to Sheepcote Valley

Another very hot day (the warmest in September since 2006) found me at Sheepcote Valley. This is a local open space, at the edge of Brighton Racecourse. Much of it was previously industrial land, but it has now become a haven for wildlife.

Sheepcote Valley

It was quiet today, even the birds were avoiding the heat. A few swallows were on the wing, building up their weight before their autumn migration to Africa. Clearly they are quite comfortable with high temperatures, and there were plenty of insects for them to feed on.

Swallow (Hirundo rustica)

Swarm of gnats

The swallows will soon be gone, but there’s one bird that thrives on the grassy valley, and that’s the kestrel. I can’t ever quite guarantee I’ll see one, but I usually do and today was no exception. Just a couple of quick shots.



By the time I was getting ready to leave the sound of the coastal foghorn was reaching the valley, and the mists were rolling in from the south. Rain is forecast for tomorrow and it will certainly be cooler. Autumn is one the way, but it’s been a good summer and a slight break in the weather will be something of a relief.

Mist over Sheepcote Valley

Camera note: all shots taken with the Canon 7D and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS lens.

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