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Geckos on La Palma

  This is a gecko (Tarentola delalandii). Geckos are quite common in the warmer parts of La Palma. They like to live in warm buildings or on sunny walls outside, and this one lives in my house. I think he must have got too close to one of my cats because his tail’s regrowing. You see, if they’re in serious danger of being eaten, their tails come off and provide…

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Summer Solstice at El Verde

This evening will be the solstice, when the sun appears at its farthest north in the sky. For the northern hemisphere, it’s the longest day of the year. (And for the southern hemisphere, it’s the longest night of the year.) La Palma has several archaeological sites which mark the solstice. One of the easiest to get to is El Verde in El Paso. Park beside the cemetery and follow the…

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Decorative panels for the sacred heart fiesta, El Paso, La Palma

Sacred Heart Fiesta in El Paso 2016

El Paso celebrated the Catholic festival of the Sacred Heart on June 5th this year (it’s 11 weeks after Easter Sunday) but I missed it. In fact I forgot all about it until the 11th when I went the silk museum with a bus load of tourists from a cruise ship. Luckily the archways were still up. The khaki coloured stuff on the ground is the needle leaves of tree…

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Gran Teleascopio Canarias sets a new record

Gran Telescopio Canarias on La Palma is the biggest telescope in the world * and it’s just photographed the faintest thing even photographed from the earth’s surface. The photograph above shows a faint halo of stars around Galaxy UGC0180, 500 million light years away. This sort of halo was predicted by theoretical models, but it’s been extremely hard to photograph because the halos are very, very faint. It’s ten times fainter than…

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