Tag Archives: photographs

Storms and tides

Red sky in the morning, shepherds' warning? Sunrise behind Mynydd Mawr.

Red sky in the morning, shepherds’ warning? Sunrise behind Mynydd Mawr.

Sunday 2nd February will see the highest tide of 2014: 5.5m at Llanddwyn Island. That is even higher than the tides at the beginning of January that caused so much damage.
The Met Office is also forecasting gale force winds for the weekend, particularly on Saturday. As the gales will be from the south west, they will drive the tide straight into the coast, again. And it looks like the strongest winds will coincide with the morning tide (5.4m) on Saturday, around 10.00am.

The National Tidal and Sea Level Facility predicts the highest and lowest astronomical tides around the UK years in advance – up to 2026 at the moment. Holyhead is the nearest location to Newborough. The highest high tide is expected next year – February 2015.

The tide times for the upcoming five days are provided by the Met Office for Llanddwyn Island at the bottom of their weather forecast. And the BBC also provides the tide times for the coming week using the data from the Hydrographic Office.

It’s worth checking the tide times if you’re planning a walk on the beach or a visit to Llanddwyn Island: the beach disappears at the highest tides, and Llanddwyn is cut off by all but the lowest high tides.

High tide at Llanddwyn/Newborough beach.

High tide at Llanddwyn/Newborough beach.

Anglesey is included in the charts provided by the Irish Meterological Service, Met Eireann: their five day forecasts are particularly useful and easy to interpret.

Advertisements

The boardwalk slides into the sea

Another day, another storm. As expected, the boardwalk at Newborough beach has collapsed and is sliding into the sea:(

Newborough viewing platform sliding into the sea

Newborough viewing platform sliding into the sea

Overnight, the beach has eroded back by about three metres, completely undermining the front legs of the platform. The legs have dropped down by about one metre to the new beach level.

Under the boardwalk - the erosion

Under the boardwalk – the erosion

Here’s an updated picture from today (Saturday 4th Jan).

Broken: the viewing platform, Newborough

Broken: the viewing platform, Newborough

Beach crows

The beach crows eke out their living by scavenging and foraging at the water’s edge and in the strandlines. They’re just regular carrion crows (Corvus corone) but have carved out a specialist niche for themselves at the beach.

Beach crows are quite happy with their feet in the water

Beach crows are quite happy with their feet in the water

Beach crows spend a fair bit of time picking sand hoppers and sand flies from sea weed that washes ashore.

Beach crows spend a fair bit of time picking sand hoppers and sand flies from sea weed that washes ashore.

Sometimes they find a piece of crab or a shellfish and they'll fly up and drop it on the rocks to break into it - just like the seagulls do

Sometimes they find a piece of crab or a shellfish and they’ll fly up and drop it on the rocks to break into it – just like the seagulls do

Beach crow strutting

 

Tamarisks

Tamarisks were first introduced to the UK in the Sixteenth Century for use by physicians. They have become naturalised, particularly around the south-west coasts of the UK. There are a few “wild” tamarisks in Newborough Forest: they are very beautiful when they flower.

A tamarisk in flower,

A tamarisk in flower

tamarisk flowers

tamarisk flower buds

Tamarisks have sprays of palest pink flowers and little bobble shaped flower buds

In some areas tamarisks are considered a noxious, invasive species, but in Wales, at the limit of their ecological range, they are scarce and untroublesome.

Golden ringed dragonfly

The track alongside the Llyn Parc Mawr nature reserve, just on the outskirts of Newborough, is a favourite hunting place for all kinds of dragonflies, including this striking (and massive) golden-ring (Cordulegaster boltonii).

Golden ringed dragonfly - Cordulegaster boltonii.

Golden ringed dragonfly – Cordulegaster boltonii.

I think this is a female because of the spike (ovipositor) on the end of her abdomen. I’d say she was about 11cm long: very impressive:)