Sunday Swans on Institute Beach

Up early on a bright winter morning. Off to our favourite place: Institute Beach.

Would we see the Grey Heron? (No)
Would we see the Little Egret? (Yes) (but No – it didn’t stay)
Would we see Cormorants? (Yes) and Shags? (Yes)
Would we see the Kingfisher? (Yes. It flashed by, far too quick to get a camera on)
Would we see the Seal (No) or the second Seal (No)

But what we did see, most delightfully, were these 2 juvenile cygnets

They could be brothers. They could be sisters.

Simply floating around in the sea as easy as you like.

When it comes to bringing peace to Sunday mornings, these two swans seem to have it sussed.

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“Fox!” “Fox!” “FOX!!”

Walking through Lincombe Woods this afternoon.

Haze & Fox in Lincombe Wood Jan 2018

Here is Haze.                                              And there is a Fox.

A what ?!?       “A FOX! A FOX! A FOX!!”

Haze was one side of the beech, the fox the other.

Fox in Lincombe Woods Jan 2018 edit

Shouting “FOX!” ‘FOX!!” “FOX!!!” did nothing to endear me to the said animal.

It shot off quick from whence it came, scarping back into the woods.

Fox in Lincombe Woods 2 Jan 2018

In future it might be best if I refrained from shouting my head off like some demented Springwatch presenter.

Got to curb the enthusiasm. Got to cool the hot jets on my eager zeal.

Got to stop getting so bleddy EXCITED!!

Goldcrest is Here!

Goldcrest edit

A tiny Goldcrest flew into the back garden last week. Within about 10 quick seconds it was gone. Maybe, never to be seen again. But it made an impression. Haze had to draw the above sketch immediately.

Hello all you Cresty Ladies out there! I can’t stop long, so here is me

MATING PROFILE on BoF (Birds of Feather)

First, lets get me name right.

A crusty Victorian poet I knew as Charlie (or Charles Tennyson Turner to give his full snooty name) called me a bloomin ‘Gold Crested Wren’. Wrote a rubbish poem about me an all. So I has to change me name quick to ‘Goldcrest’.

Another silly name daft Victorians was callin me is ‘Woodcock Pilot’; believin I am hitchin lifts across the sea on backs of woodcocks. Eh?! How stupid can you get! Durr! Wrong! I can fly all by meself thank you very much!

So am I a ‘Gold Crested Wren’? No!. Am I a ‘Woodcock Pilot’? No!.
I a Goldcrest, pure an simple.

I light as a feather. Well, not much more than a 10p pea. A quarter ounce (to you and me)
I might be a tiny mite, but I packs a punch for such a titch.
I got no neck, but this gold crest on me bonce gets rather sexy an scintillatin in the sun.

I flew all way across North Sea from Northest Norway to meet you.
I be a bit of a Flash ‘Arry. You won’t see me if you not got sharp eye. I constant on the fidget.
I likes to hide in ivy for a nice spot of spider for lunch, and can hover up dopey insects that ain’t keepin a lookout.
I sometimes flocks wiv Tits, but don’t join them on birdtables and feeders. Too upside down for my likin them Tits.

Bein Britains smallest bird I can’t stand it too chill or cold.

I ain’t afraid of humans; I lands on them sometimes for a bit of a warm.
Old humans can’t hear me sing. So I lands on them too. To tune up their earoles.

I be best bird in Luxembourg. Official. They got me on stamps an everythin.

I be best bird in Britain too if I could. Only robins beat me, got there first, in No 1 spot. Boo!

Ok, thats bin me. Hope all you lovely ladies like me. Give me a wave wiv your camera!

Illustration: Hazel Brown; Words: Ian Nisbet

Crow of White Wing

A first. I’ve never seen a crow with a white wing before.

Could be that it, or she, was an old crow. A croney crow.

Her white wing a sign perhaps of great old age.

By the end of this winter she could be completely white.

She seemed to want to befriend the chattery starlings in the silver birch. Join in with their bright sparkly energy.

A second crow flew in. Croney crow ignored him (or her)