Hi, I'm Rudi, i'm 8 years old and my favourite book is 'Tarka the Otter' by Henry Williamson. Its about the life of an otter named Tarka and British Wildlife. One night i was reading the book with my dad and i said that i wanted to see all the animals in the book, he said i should do it and call it the Tarka Challenge. My Tarka Challenge started on 1st January 2012. The book contains 89 birds, 54 land based animals, 120 plants and 56 aquatic organisms.

The rules are simple, i must either see each thing myself or photograph it using my trail camera. I will try and see each thing on my local patch (Ogmore River Catchment) but may need to look somewhere else in Britain.

Kenfig Pool

We went to Kenfig Pool today to try and see some Whimbrels, by the time we got to the hide they had flown off, we had also just missed a Marsh Harrier. There were loads of Swallows and Martins over the pool and we heard a Cettis Warbler. We saw Bullfinch, Wheatears and Jays.

We saw these plants and a Glow Worm larvae (thanks to Katie for identifying it and letting me know).

Glow Worm

 Cuckoo Flower

 Early Purple Orchid

 Early Purple Orchid

Yellow Archangel

Then we went to Parc Slip and saw a Willow Warbler, Little Grebe and some Ducklings. 3 things off the list.

Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis)

These are also known as Dabchick it has a really short tail which makes it look round like a ball.

Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)

Is the commonest warbler in Britain. They live in Africa in the winter time and fly back to Britain for summer, a journey of 8,000 miles. It is really difficult to tell Chiff Chaffs and Willow Warblers apart, the best way is to learn the different song of each bird.


Ducklings are mentioned in the book but it doesnt say what type of ducklings. It was propbably this type (mallard).


  1. Hi Rudi! I think that might be a glow-worm larva. Have a look at these pics and see what you think: http://www.uksafari.com/glowworms.htm

    1. I think you are right, it does look like one of those. Thanks for letting me know.