In August we had a surprising visit in "our" falconry niche in the late evening. A barn owl, which we had been looking for in the western Enzkreis for a long time, was unfortunately only visible for a short time. The snapshot came about rather by chance. We would be very happy if the owls would breed again in the beltower of the Barbara church, a suitable nesting box has been available for many years.
In July we had an unusually large number of troops of white storks visiting the area. Once 42 on a meadow near the Pfinz springs, one of them had his ring read, he came from Rhineland-Palatinate (Haßloch).
In June we visited Uli and Ulrike in Wurmberg in their beautiful natural garden. There is a lot to discover there, and to our great joy the young owls in the neighbouring garden had flown out.
Shortly before the Whitsun weekend we visited the Lady's Slipper Orchids on a day trip in the Swabian Alb. This beautiful flower stands in a densely grown forest, therefore the light conditions are a special challenge.
During the Corona pandemic many things are not possible, the traditional resurrection celebration on the morning of Easter Sunday at the cemetery of Ellmendingen was one of them. Since events on public ground are currently prohibited, a private brass band consisting of Ernst Bär, Michael Schmidt, Wolfgang Mayer and Stefan Rupp gave a concert for the citizens of Ellmendingen on our terrace.
Also in our region there are already a lot of early bloomers this year, the many rains at the beginning of the year and mild temperatures afterwards created many wonderful colours on the meadows and in the woods in the middle of the corona pandemic chaos.
Already at the beginning of February the amphibian migration in the "Enzkreis" began, but after that it became frosty again in the nights.
We started the new year with several Black Water dives in Anilao (Philippines).
Blackwater Diving - diving over the deep sea - offers the diver a completely different universe. Every night the
largest mass migration on earth takes place in vertical direction, from the deep sea to the water surface and back
again. During the diving itself you can see a lot of juvenile fish, which do not always look like their adult relatives.
In supposedly empty salps you can discover tiny larvae, crabs and sometimes even a nautilus.
The many creatures dance in front of the divers and diving lamps, it is a really exciting experience and the variety of species seems boundless. The objects of desire are called: Wunderpus, Long Armed Octopus, Blanket Octopus, Paper Nautilus and Ribbon Fish (there is also a Top Five here). The deep black water highlights the details and colours even more than in conventional night dives.