Month: April 2018

Mrs Blackbird is making a nest

This time last year, almost to the day, Mrs Blackbird was making a nest. The video ‘Mrs Blackbird gets her beak dirty’ confirms it.

The difference between last year and this year is that the nest being made now appears to be actually in the garden. Nestled somewhere deep within the winter jasmine bush behind the new apple tree.

Mrs Blackbird was rushing around in a frenzy. As if carrying eggs that were in urgent need of being laid.

Mr Blackbird mostly sat watching, on lookout, letting her get on with it. He’ll be required to be diligent supplier of worms and caterpillars in a couple of weeks time.

Exciting, and slightly nerve-wracking, times ahead!

Filming: Hazel Brown; Vid & Words: Ian Nisbet

Spring afternoon in Tessier Gardens

Tessier Garden Walk edit

A beautiful spring day to take a stroll in Tessier Gardens. A quiet park filled with a variety of trees and flowering shrubs, flower beds bursting with tulips, daffodils, primroses and bluebells.

Birdsong echoes around the park, bumblebees… zig zagging lazily humming .. busily buzzing everywhere and anywhere, exploring this sun-filled warm afternoon.

Time out to sit and sketch … a flask of tea… and I am totally surrounded and absorbed by these magnificent trees!

Sketch & Words: Hazel Brown

Little Wrens

Up at Labrador Bay male wrens were bouncing out of the hedges. Their loud strident calls were just about audible over the horrible din of traffic from the road behind.

I’ve put those clips together with the few clips of the wren we’ve seen infrequently furtling around in the back garden this winter.

So finally, at last, here is a small film of these neat little wrens with their dapper tailed bottoms. Priceless. Precious. Invaluable.

Filming: Hazel Brown (mostly); Vid: Ian Nisbet

Cirl Buntings in the Barley

Off early to Labrador Bay Nature Reserve this Sunday morning.  See if we can get a better look at those curly buntings.

We can. The buntings, a dozen or more, come bunt bunting about right in front of us. We can hardly keep up with them with our cameras.

We’re both completely absorbed, delightfully enthralled, totally thrilled.

Like bandits in the barley are these chubbly cirl buntings.

It feels like that time we were filming red darter dragonflies up at Tessier Gardens. Like we’ve been gifted something magical and marvelous to delight in together.

We filmed wrens hopping about in the hedgerows too, belting out their short sharp songs above the din of the cars on the road behind (a vid of them is in the next post)

A Gold Medal Moment morning.

Vid & Words: Ian Nisbet

Shelducks on the Teign Estuary

Down to the Teign estuary this Saturday at low tide expecting to see various wading birds.

Saturday afternoon estuary April 2018 edit

Not a sausage. Mudflats bereft of bird (as drawn by Haze there)

Where’ve they all gone? Back to Africa?

Fortunately (for bird blogging purposes) this pair of shelducks turn up.

Shelducks 2 Teign Estuary April 2018

Sifting and sweeping across the mud-flats with red beaked hoovers.

Shelducks Teign Estuary April 2018

Kind of goose-like in size and shape.

Shelducks 3 Teign Estuary April 2018

They took off, with big beating wings, syncronised in tandem together (I got that on film and may use it at some point in the future)

It was cold on that estuary. More like chilly January than April Spring.

Sketch: Hazel Brown; Words: Ian Nisbet

Dashing Dart

A slow walk to the Dart river.

Yet more notices about picking up poo
(I presume this isn’t a Phantom Poo Person on the loose, but the usual dog doo dah bollocks)

Bag that poo April 2nd 2018

Somebody had been out picking up, not Poo –  Plastic.

Plastic Rubbish 2 April 2nd 2018

A ceremonial pile of plastic laid out right next to the river Dart.

Plastic Rubbish April 2nd 2018

Plus a couple of glass bottles, some tin cans, a trainer, and other sundry detritus.

Maybe a nice person picking up plastic but without a plastic bag to bin it with.
Or an angry person making a point of drawing attention to how much plastic gets carelessly thrown around perhaps?

It drew my attention. So I took those pictures. To post on the blog.
(Unfortunately I hadn’t got anything on hand to bin this plastic heap of crap either)

Everywhere around on this Easter Bank Holiday Monday was as inert, as dead, as that plastic pile of poo.

But nothing inert about the river Dart today.

Positively bouncing and bubbling along with unstoppable energy, necessary life.