For some reason I always find myself needing the coastline at times when my anxiety is pretty bad. Being outdoors really helps clear my mind, and wildlife photography is a perfect way to help focus the mind on single tasks, blotting out a lot of things that I’m finding difficult at the moment. I’m currently out of work due to both physical and mental health issues. Whilst the outdoors certainly helps with my mental health, I do have to choose my destinations in accordance to public restrooms.. Not the most pleasant of things, but it’s something I’m going to have to get used to, having been diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease. I’m sure you’ll know somebody with this disease, and they’ll tell you, it’s not very pleasant. These people may also suffering with mental health issues, as it can be quite debilitating. Whilst it’s not the sole reason for my social anxiety, it certainly doesn’t help. With all that in mind, I chose to go to Ogmore this morning, as the car park has public toilets and it’s situated just meters from the coastline. High tide was at 9am, and despite the early Dog walkers creating a challenge to get close to the birds without disturbance, I did find a quiet corner where the birds felt secure, even with the Dogs on the rocks. I’ve always wanted to photograph Purple Sandpiper, having heard that they can be quite approachable, and they were! so long as they weren’t amongst other species of waders like Turnstone and Oystercatcher, as if you spook one bird, they all tend to fly away. The light was tricky to work with as it was slightly backlit from the white crashing waves. This in conjunction with 40mph winds and sharp rocks, it was quite precarious at times. A revisit in better light is a must!