Those of us who volunteer at Llechwedd Slate Caverns and all the staff there, are feeling that odd mixture of sadness, pride and slight anxiety today - our babies have finally left the cavern!

They were careering around the ledges like kids on a picnic last week and on Saturday they had disappeared. However on Sunday, faced with the sort of downpour that only Snowdonia can produce, they crept back inside! Today the weather was improving and they were off again!

They will still be around the huge quarry/ cavern complex that comprises Llechwedd being taught how to feed themselves and as summer progresses they will be seen further and further afield probably ending up over the other side of the Moelwyn Hills in the Croesor Valley. We will get the occasional report of a sighting - they are individually identifiable by the coloured rings that were put on them some weeks ago.

We are so pleased that our parent birds have raised all four of their chicks this year - up to now we have only ever had three survive. This is a really great "Date with Nature" site and we hope to be back next year - do try to come! Choughs are quite simply brilliant birds! Noisy, active, intelligent and playful as only corvids can be.

Three cheers for the Llechwedd Choughs!!

Jenni