Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas Gifts at Cley Spy

Stuck for a gift idea for someone special or just plain awkward? Cley Spy has more to offer that you might think. With over 180 models of binoculars and over 40 scopes plus second hand equipment to choose from we can accommodate almost any requirements or budget when it comes to optics, but that's not all. We also have tripods, a range of outdoor clothing and hats, bags, bird food and feeders, nest boxes, books, toys and much more.

Here are a few of our most popular gift lines.

Our ever popular tripod carrier, specifically designed to make carrying even the heaviest scope and
tripod easy and comfortable. Built to live up to the expectations of the most demanding birders. It has become a standard piece of equipment for birders, making it easy to take your scope on long walks. Many people have commented on how they have been using their scope a lot more since they got their Mule.

Easy to fit to almost any tripod and available postage free to UK addresses for just £59.

Swarovski's CL Pocket. Small, light and perfect.
Compact binoculars.

Whilst binoculars are a very personal choice, a small pocket size compact is always a welcome addition to any birders kit, and indeed very useful for anyone who enjoys the countryside, architecture or the theatre. We have an extensive range of compacts from under £20 to over £500.
Here are a few of the most popular models that give excellent optical performance for their price and are very user friendly.

Smart phone digiscoping adapters.

Watch the birdie!
The Viking Smartphone Adapter.
This method of bird photography has really taken off in the last two years, being by far the easiest way to attach a camera to a scope or binoculars. The adapters are light weight, have little bulk and make use of the ever improving camera technology in mobile phones. These are a great way to take good quality photos and video of what you see through your scope quickly and easily without carrying any heavy equipment or cumbersome adapters.
TheViking Smartphone Adapter is an adjustable adapter that can hold almost any phone securely on the scope eyepiece. It can be supplied with rings to fit a variety of scope eyepieces, see our website for details.
Perfectly formed. The Kowa iphone adapter.

TheKowa iphone adapter is purpose built to attach the Apple iphone 5 and 5S to Swarovski ATS/STS zoom eyepieces and to Kowa's own TSN 880 and 770 series scopes. Being designed just for this one model of phone and these two scopes it is an excellent piece of functional and economic engineering that hardly adds to the bulk of the phone.

The Kata Digital Rucksack.
Separated space for cameras and kit.

We have a selection Kata and Lowepro bags for camera kit and dual-purpose bags that are like conventional rucksacks, but with padded camera/optics compartments. The Lowepro Scope porter is a bag designed with the birdwatcher in mind, featuring a central padded compartment for transporting a scope.


These bags are designed to be comfortable and ergonomic, and to put as little strain on you back, shoulders and neck as possible. They have proved to be a great hit with our customers over many years and have become one of those products that spread by word of mouth. They have become the handbag of choice for all our female staff!

Optical equipment can be a tricky thing to buy for someone else, with comfort, size, weight and individual eyesight being important factors in finding the perfect piece of equipment. Gift vouchers are a good way to give someone a contribution to purchase their own choice of optics. Vouchers can be purchased in the denominations listed on our website or you can call us to get a voucher of any value. Gift vouchers can be used to purchase any of our stock, not just optics.

What else?

In addition to all of the above we also have a range of bird food, feeders, Tilley hats, books and toys that are only available in store. Come and visit us at Glandford where you can take a brake from the city centre hustle and bustle to enjoy Cley Spy, the Birdscapes art gallery, The Art Café and the Bayfield Wildlife Walk.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Making water flow uphill

Just three months after being dug the pond was already looking
good. The water from the roof enters the pond under the pantile
in the centre of the far bank.

When we moved into our new shop at the top of the farmyard at Glandford we also took over the
managing of the half-acre field at the back. This became our wild flower meadow and viewing area for customers to test binoculars and scopes in a real world situation looking at some real birds and wildlife. One essential part of any wildlife garden is a pond, but being half way up a slope on sandy heathland soil that drains as freely as a colander made this a tricky thing to achieve. Obviously a pond liner was going to be essential and we also wanted to make use of the rainwater caught by the roof of the shop. In spite of the pond being up hill from the shop, with a bit of lateral thinking the solution was arrived at. The downpipe from the shops gutters went underground to a soak away some ten metres out into the field. It was a relatively simple task to find the end of the pipe and extend it to the location of the pond. Careful shaping of the pond edge has
How it works. Rain water from the shop roof fills the pond.
allowed the pipe to fill the pond and then to overflow back into the soak away. Even though the pond is higher than the the soak away and shop ground level there is a great enough head of water in the downpipe to push it up the slope and into the pond. Thanks to the size of the roof area, for every 1cm of rain 600 litres of water flow into the pond. This helps keep the water fresh and has kept the level up even in the driest spells over the last two years.

Even the smallest pond can be a haven for wildlife like this
Broad-bodied Chaser dragonfly (Libellula depressa)
In this short time we have had a good variety of aquatic life, including pond skaters, water boatmen, diving beetles, frogs, newts and toads and six species of dragonflies and damselflies. More vegetation is becoming established in and around the pond and it is a great place for the birds to come and drink and bathe.