Thursday, 8 November 2012

Half Term - The Final Instalment ... WARNING ... A Lot of Photos

Hello there! "Thank You" for your kind comments on my last post. Your words of encouragement about my photography means a lot to me. Having said all that, the photos on this post were all taken on the automatic setting!

On Friday morning of last week KP and I had haircuts booked whilst the OH went and bought some rat traps! We had heard the pitter patter of unwelcome visitors during our stay and a conversation with our neighbours confirmed that they had rats too! We had earlier in the week purchased some poison which had been left in the attic and the rats had eaten it all so we put some more down and blocked off where we believed was their point of entry with chicken wire. So now, if they do get in, they will be poisoned or de-capitated!

After the haircuts we drove to Axe Valley Wildlife Park on the outskirt of Axminster. This is a small family run park. When we entered the car park there were very few cars and we feared the worst but, it really was a marvellous place. There was a peacock just wandering around and a little rabbit too.

A new introduction to the Park were two leopard cats. Followers of this blog will know that we are animal mad here especially in relation to cats and dogs! Isn't the above just beautiful.

This photo was taken through perspex screening so is not as clear as perhaps it could be but is far better than wire cages to see the animals. I think if I were an animal I would prefer to be able to look out without any obstruction too!

Doesn't this little one have such intense eyes.

I wonder what he's spotted high up in the tree!

We came to the enclosure that contained a rhea.

And a crane who had a hairdo to rival our new haircuts any day!

This crane was strutting its stuff - parading around its enclosure.

A bit of a show off!

We came across a porcupine behind its glass enclosure.

There were a number of ducks and chickens wandering freely around. I loved the colours on this one.

That beak could do some serious damage!

In amidst all the animals there was some colourful roses!

And now to my absolute favourite animals here - raccoon dogs. KP wanted to bring one home!

Aren't they just adorable.

Too cute for words!

There were plenty of birds.

And a coati.

KP said "Isn't he a darling!"

She wanted to bring this one home too!

We wandered back to the raccoon dogs and both came to greet us.

The OH got them to come up to the viewing area by rattling the car keys. They were clearly interested. Maybe they did want to come home with us!

This bird resembled a turkey. I don't know if it is!

We came across a great grey owl who was a bit aloof. The car key trick did not impress this one! He was clearly happy to stay where he was!

We went and saw the zebras.

And the wallabies.

Before coming across some reindeer.

Look at the antlers on this one -  you wouldn't want to be in this field when he was in an angry mood.

And then we saw the kookaburras. When I have seen them in other wildlife parks they have always remained at the back of their cages and high up. There were three in a cage here and they were so close you could have touched them.

I have always loved these birds,  more so than colourful parrots who can perform tricks and speak.

One of the three clearly had a dodgy beak!

I was so happy to be this close that I was a bit snap happy but thought that you wouldn't mind looking at all the photos that I took of them as I just couldn't decide which ones to leave out!

Looks as if he / she is listening to our conversation. It went something like "I could take them home too, they are so cute!"

The last kookaburra photo!

We came across an eagle owl.

And then we heard this otter literally chattering away almost as if we were being beckoned over.

This otter loved getting the attention. Just as we were at the otters enclosure it started to rain. We dived into the little cafe for a cup of tea and a slice of cake. It is a very small cafe but it did the trick for as soon as we had finished our cuppa the sun came out.

So we decided that we would do another walk around the small site and visit a few of our favourite animals.
First came the cheeky crane with his brilliant hairdo!

Then the little chipmunks who had been too fast for my camera the first time round but this one had an itch and so stopped long enough for a scratch for me to get a photo!

The rhea who kept trying to get at our bag of bird food!

The leopard cat.

Who kindly looked both left and right to allow me to take these two photos.

I just love the markings.

We came to the meerkat enclosure.

And the mongoose which we had missed the first time around.

There were many different varieties of duck. I think this is a duck anyway!

I wouldn't want to be pecked by this one!

Chickens with fluffy feet waddled around.

Roaming freely.

That's what I like about places like this - they're not on the top ten list of attractions to visit but turn out to be far better than those commercial outlets. This is a family run business and it is clear that the animals are the number one priority which is how it should be.

The cheeky rhea who wanted our bird food!

A close up!

This crane gave me the creeps. I have a photo taken just after this one where he opened his mouth so that you could literally see down its throat and rolled its eyes back into its head which was very, very creepy and although I was tempted to show it to you, I haven't, as it freaked me out at the time and I don't really want to remind myself of it! 

I don't know what this bird is but we had missed it too the first time around!

And finally, a black swan.

On Saturday the weather was again a bit hit and miss so we headed for Bridport to wander around the vintage shops. I purchased a blue french enamel jug.

In the evening we made our way to Lyme Regis to see the fireworks on The Cobb.

I tried to take photos on the manual setting but I'd forgotten everything the tutor had told us about how to take photos of fireworks - silly me! I'll now have to wait till next year!

Some people were watching from the beach and I love the silhouetted effect.

Especially on this photo.

And if you've lasted with me till this photo - "Thank You" for, as usual, I have taken too many photos and wittered on - so, I'd better stop!

Until next time,



  1. Wow, what a range of animals, great pics June. I love the owls and the racoon dogs certainly have a lot of character.
    At least you managed to capture the fireworks, sometimes they go off so quickly that you've hardly got time to get your camera out.........
    Enjoy your weekend,

    Claire :}

  2. Another set of gorgeous photos! How wonderful to see fireworks over the Cobb at Lyme Regis, I love it there. Your bird and animal photos are wonderful and like you I have a soft spot for racoons. Also love the coatis, meercats and leopard cats:)

  3. Well it looks like quite a half term holiday. I hope you are having a rest this week! I love your photographs of the crane, and really enjoyed your previous post too.

  4. Some of those critters are just too cute ... lovely photos June, regardless of the camera setting :D

  5. Fantastic photos of the animals and the fireworks, I love the why you have captured the silhouettes too.
    Sarah x

  6. Beautiful photos, beautiful animals, looks like a lovely place to visit. x

  7. Grand tour - thank you. I don't think we would like living behind wired fences either.

  8. Well that was a lovely assortment of animals! The raccoon were my favourite!
    Automatic settings are fine. I stayed on mine for nearly two years before I learnt manual settings!!
    In answer to your question, the trees you were asking about are Larch. I written it in now as I had intended in the first place!
    Have a great weekend!

  9. What a cute selection of animals..great photos. I had never heard of a coati before, they are adorable! When I went to the zoo as a child, the meerkats were always my favorite..they were such cheeky lil things.
    Have a fab weekend!
    Magie x

  10. Did this place open with the idea just to look after the cute animals?!
    Love the raccoon too.
    Lisa x

  11. spectacular photos and some wonderful haircuts going on ! I'd want to take the Raccoon home too - so gorgeous and sweet.

  12. You've got some great shots here- so many cute animals. It looks lie a great place for a day out.

  13. I really enjoyed this post. What a great collection of animals you saw!

  14. Fabulous photos, I've been oooing and arrring!! (not sure about spelling there!)What a great place to visit! Suzy x

  15. The meerkat and the otter have such cute faces. Fantastic photos all of them.

  16. What a wonderful place. It's often the case that lesser known places are much better than the larger, more well known ones. I think you hit on a gem there. Such cute animals, but the otters have to be my favourites, they're so cute with all their whiskers. Love the photos of the fireworks, especially with the people silhouetted.

  17. I love all the photos and "wittering", it's never too much. What a lovely place for a visit.

  18. Fabulous photographs I enjoyed them so much I would have liked to have seen more. Very good photos...lovely and clear. I can understand why you felt like taking them home...they look very bright!
    Eagle's head wow!!!!! Splendid!

    keep well

    Amanda :-)

    1. oh! dear left out a sentence
      it should read " Those cheeky looking racoons are adorable. I can understand ...."


      Amanda :-)

  19. I love your firework photos and think that the setting contributed to the image. Did you watch David Attenborough's Ark programme? Wondering what you ten animals would be?
    Best wishes

  20. Gorgeous photos June, what a fantastic place - so many cute animals. Great fireworks too, I especially love the last couple of pics. x

  21. Just stopping by to say hello and hope you are doing ok xx

  22. What wonderful photos and a wonderful place. It's practically on our doorstep so I have added it to my long list of 'places to visit soon'. We were going to go and see the fireworks at Lyme too but spent the day in the opposite direction and got back too late. M x

  23. wow. I really loved all of these.. you could make some cards from them? Stunning and sweet and (as an animal lover), adorable! thanks for visiting us. Love Helen, Darcy and Bingley xxx

  24. Fantastic photos - love the leopard cat and the raccoon dogs - they do look as if they are saying "take us with you".
    Go on, show us the crane with a view down his throat and his eyes rolling - Its a dare.


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