Two weeks ago I was in the St Just area for a week back in Cornwall, recharging my batteries – a much needed holiday. It’s such a beautiful area; moors, tors, megaliths, wooded valleys, azure seas, granite houses, amazing wildlife, and of course, Cornish choughs.

On our first day there Tehmina and I went for a walk down through the beautiful Cot Valley to Porth Nanven. The beauty of this place is breathtaking, especially when the sea appears between the valley walls

The Brisons, viewed down the Cot Valley

When we arrived at Porth Nanven, we experienced our first sighting of a pair of Cornish choughs in the wild. I managed to take a photo as one landed on the cliff, but without my zoom lens, the photo isn’t up to much. We were just in awe at having seen them. The following day we decided to follow the cliff path from St Just to Geevor. When we got to Botallack, we spotted another chough!

Cornish chough at Botallack

I still didn’t have my zoom lens with me, but you should be able to spot him in the photo above (click to see a larger version). How do I know he’s a he? There’s a yellow tag on his right leg. That evening we were chatting to a member of staff in a local pub and mentioned our sighting. As it happens, she happened to also be a volunteer who monitors choughs in the area – what luck!

A couple of days later, we went back to Porth Nanven. This time I had my zoom lens with me.

Cornish choughs in flight

A pair flew across the valley above us. It was a truly unforgettable sight, and I’m glad to have this photo as a reminder.

I am only used to seeing the Cornish chough as a heraldic device, so seeing them in real life, in Cornwall was unforgettable. I have four on my coat of arms (three ‘in the field’ and one on the crest). We are very lucky to have them once again in Cornwall, may they thrive once more!

Goskar coat of Arms

Goskar coat of Arms