Another view of the same tree...
At Shipley Hill, the magnificent Beech Tree which stands guard over the southern side of the hill, is just showing it's colours around the edges.
In the back garden, things have started preparing for Autumn too. Spider's webs hang from every plant and fence post, tangling around your face whenever you try to get to the shed. Among the leaves, there lurks a stranger. Looking somewhat spider-like, this is a Harvestman (Phalangium opilio) and it has a face only a mother could love! This one, I think is a female as males have horn-like structures at the front.
Despite looking like one, it is in fact NOT a spider although closely related. They do not have fangs or produce venom and they don't produce silk for web-spinning either. They are however, ferocious little predators of other insects, small snails and slugs, which it catches using the tiny hooks and spines on its legs. Look out for them, they are everywhere at this time of year!
Moving swiftly on to something much more attractive, we encountered the four cygnets which have been raised on the overflow from Shipley Lake.
Now they are reaching maturity, it would appear that they have been abandoned by their parents as there is no longer any sign of them. But these four juveniles look quite able to look after themselves and are sticking together for the time being.