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about the cliffs of moher

Cliffs of Moher

Co. Clare, Ireland

The Cliffs of Moher are located at the southwestern edge of the Burren region. They rise 120 metres (390 ft) above the Atlantic Ocean at Hag’s Head, and, eight kilometres to the north, reach their maximum height of 214 metres (702 ft) just north of O’Brien’s Tower, which is a round stone tower near the midpoint of the cliffs. From the cliffs, visitors can see the Aran Islands in Galway Bay, and Twelve Pins mountain range to the north in Connemara, County Galway.

connemara coast galway

Connemara Coast

Connemara, Co. Galway, Ireland

The term Connemara refers to the northern area of County Galway to the west of Lough Corrib. This photo was taken in Cashel Bay not far from the popular village of Roundstone on the southern coastline which overlooks the Aran Islands in Galway Bay.

the burren

The Burren in the West of Ireland

The Burren, Co. Clare, Ireland

In Irish, the Burren means “great rock“. It’s a region in County Clare on the West coast of the country, dominated by karst landscape and measures an area of around 250 square kilometres.

Having an unusually temperate climate which allows for a longer growing season and an unusual environment, the region supports a rich and diverse plant life which includes arctic, alpine and Mediterranean plants all growing side-by-side. The most famous is the gorgeous deep blue Spring Gentian which flowers around May time.

 

flora burren

Burren Flora

The Burren, Co. Clare, Ireland

The Burren is an area of outstanding natural beauty on the West coast of Ireland. It is dominated by an extraordinary karst landscape and covers an area of about 250 square kilometres. The gentle, rolling hills are composed of limestone pavements, which are made up of criss-cross cracks known as “grikes”, leaving the isolated rocks which are called “clints”.

The region supports arctic, Mediterranean and alpine plants alongside each other due to the most unusual environment, and about three quarters of Ireland’s flower species are found in The Burren.

water buffalo pictures

Water Buffalo at Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat, Siem Reap, Cambodia

The water buffalo were crossing the river adjacent to the magnificent and ornate South Entrance of Angkor Thom.

barn owl pictures

Barn Owl

County Tipperary, Southern Ireland

This bird is thought to have consumed a pesticide infected rodent and was immediately transferred to a barn owl sanctuary for treatment. It soon recovered and was returned to its habitat.

There has been a notable decline in Barn owl numbers in Ireland. This is thought to be caused by the loss of suitable habitat due to various aspects of intensified agricultural practices.

pictures of pheasants

Pheasant in Flight

Speed of flight – South of England

Pheasants often break cover from a corn field, or vineyard in this instance at high speed. Feeding on ground cover, they have to rise through the crop and flee in haste. Expecting to hear the sound of gunshot as the shooting season starts, this bird put on a fly-past performance that was hard to follow!

Male birds are highly decorated with bright colours and have a longer tail than the females. They typically eat seeds and a few insects.

pink flamingo picture

Footloose – Pink Flamingo

Sifting for Food

This flamingo is searching for food, such as small crustaceans using its upturned bill in a gentle sweeping motion.

pictures of seagulls flying

Formation

Beaufort, North Carolina

Seagulls in search of a meal as they encircle the dock area. With several boats moored and occupied in this attractive small town on the North Carolina coastline, there is always an opportunity for food.

It was around these shores that the notorious pirate Black Beard, aka Edward Teach from England, plied his trade in the 17th and 18th-centuries. It was in Beaufort inlet that his ship, Queen Anne’s Revenge ran aground on a sandbar and was damaged beyond repair.

Crimson Ibis

Scarlet Ibis

Sylvan Heights Bird Park, North Carolina

The range of the scarlet ibis is very large, and colonies are found throughout vast areas of South America and the Caribbean islands.

Their long, thin bills are used to seek out food in soft muddy areas and under plant-life. Their diet consists of shrimps and certain insects, some of which are ground beetles and scarabs.

Flaming Pinks

Preening Flamingos

Preening Pretty Pink Flamingos

Flamingo comes from the Spanish word flamengo meaning, “flame-coloured”. These two birds were busying themselves in some late afternoon preening of feathers.

Flamingos normally stand on one leg while the other on is tucked underneath their body. This may allow the birds to conserve more body heat, as they are known to spend much of their time wading in cold water.

Through the Keyhole

At First Sight – Macaw

Sylvan Heights Bird Park, North Carolina

Red-and-green macaws inhabit the forests and woodlands of northern and central South America. Sadly in recent years, as with other macaws, there has been a large decline in numbers due to illegal trading and loss of habitat.