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Wednesday 28 December 2011

Fire From Fir

When out in coniferous forest one of the easiest and most relaible methods of lighting fire from whats around you is to use the resin that comes from the trees, all resinous trees produce good quality fire making fluid and this Fir tree is one of my favourites

This particular Fir produces little blisters of resin on it's bark, this stuff is brilliant for lots of things including great medicinal properties which we will talk about at a later date, fire is the thing we want to discuss today

I've punctured the blister with my mora and you can see the resultant resin running out and down the blade

After taking the resin out of about 6 blisters we end up with about 10mls of fire starting sticky stuff, I've collected it in a green leaf to prove it's the resin that burns and not the leaf!

Get your ferro rod and strike a spark onto the resin and away you go

A few more seconds collecting some more resin and away we go again, the ground was soaking, it was raining quite heavily, dry tinder was hard to find but we can still easily get fire from whats around us, and there we have it, Fire From Fir.

Saturday 24 December 2011

Happy Christmas to all Buzzard Bushcrafters

Went out to gather some wild things to make a christmas wreath as you can see it's no masterpiece but I'm happy with it,
 and I'd just like to thank you all for reading my inane writings, a very merry Christmas to all who visit these pages and I hope the new year brings new dreams and new friendships..

Wednesday 21 December 2011

An unusual Fungal Find

when out recently I came across this beauty, I should have out my knife against it so that would have given you a sign of scale, but it's a beauty and one I only find very rarely

Can you tell what it is? It was a big one weighing about 2 pounds!!!!

I cut in half as the outside was looking a little rough, the inside was starting to turn but would probably have been edible, after all it is a cauliflower fungus!

Sunday 18 December 2011

Blue staining Boletus

I found a great cluster of boletus mushrooms recently, I'm not exactly sure what species they are but I think they might be Boletus Erythropus but don't quote me on that and if anybody can positively identify them please get in touch.

Lovely and velvety on the outside and a gorgeous sulphur yellow inside when first cut

Staining green/blue very quickly on exposure to the air,the reaction is glorious to see and very impressive to those who haven't seen it before, keep your eyes out for these great fungi.

Wednesday 14 December 2011

Yew Berries

Went out for a little walk to see if there were any wild edibles about. It's been very stormy and plenty of sleet and some snow lying on the higher ground so I was interested to see if there was anything sweet about.

There's a nice yew tree were I often walk and it always has a pile of berries on it, lovely and sweet and slimey

Always remember to spit the seeds out as they are poisonous. Unusually most things about the tree are poisonous except the juicy berries,but always take care with any wild food and never eat what you're not 100% sure off.

Sunday 11 December 2011

Bird from palm fronds

At times I just like to make little things, nothing complicated just simple depictions of things from nature, after all nature should be the reason we all love bushcraft so much..

Very simply made as you can see, this one is about 2 1/2 inches long, but I thought I'd like to try and make a small one so..

I made this little one using the knives I made recently from the the hacksaw blades, as you can see this one is the baby about 3/4 inch long!

While I was at it I thought I'd make the whole family and here we have it, the three little birds.

Wednesday 7 December 2011

Bloodberry Sauce

I froze a couple of pounds of elderberries so that I could make a sauce suitable for use with the christmas turkey this year as I'm getting fed up with cranberry, and elderberry has a great rich flavour which complements turkey meat very well

Berries defrosted and in the maslin, just to add a little sugar and some lemon juice then strain to form a nice jelly suitable for most why have I titled this bloodberry???

Well, when I was growing up along the Co Down coast and foraging with my grandfather he would always call these bloodberries and only when I brought them home to my grandmother and she showed me how to make jam with them did I realise why this was so, clearly once it's ready to set it looks just like blood, as a matterof fact I often find myself calling them bloodberries and have to remind myself that thats just a little colloquialism I share with my family

But it brings back great memories for me..

Sunday 4 December 2011

Wild Woods Day Out

Sometimes all you need is to get out and have a bit of craic to get the batteries recharged, as always learning bits and pieces but always having fun and not taking things too seriously

We set up an easy camp in some lovely Birch woodland, just a few tarps as rain had been forecast but luckily enough the showers seemed to pass us by

Got the beginnings of a long log fire started as we intended a part for flame for heat and boiling water and a part for embers as we had some game to cook.

On went a nice fare of rabbit and a brace of partridge

Took no time at all for the game to be perfectly roasted over a cracking deep bed of embers

All big jessies together behaving like big kids!

Unfortunately at this time of the year light fades all too fast and it wasn't long before we had to break camp and head for home as the sun sank at the western end of the woods.

Addendum.. as we got home tonight it had started to snow, lightly of course but this is the first fall this year!