Category Archives: Flora/Fauna

The hunter and the prey

Friday 5th March 2021, 7.55am (day 3,480)

Hawk with prey, 5/3/21

Walking down to the station in the morning I noticed a commotion by the side of the road, heard desperate cawing. I thought at first it was a bird with a broken wing, flapping around, maybe having been hit by a car. Then I saw what it actually was. It will be forever regretted that the focus ended up on the wall and not the hawk; I only got the one shot off before it picked up the starling (I think) in its talons and flew off to enjoy its breakfast. But other than that slight lack of focus I can’t complain too much about this one. Surely there is a detectable look of pride on its face. I am also reminded of this picture: which William Blake/Thomas Harris fans will recognise.

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More Friday night duckwatching

Friday 26th February 2021, 4.55pm (day 3,473)

Evening ducks, 26/2/21

Media rhetoric suggests we should all be grateful that Our Glorious Leaders have announced a ‘roadmap’ out of lockdown but none of that changes the fact that for now, and for weeks yet, there’s nothing to do. The ducks continue to have a far better social life than us, At least the evenings are getting lighter, the days (a little) warmer.

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Catkins

Monday 22nd February 2021, 1.45pm (day 3,469)

Catkins, 22/2/21

The sun was definitely out this afternoon. Spring feels like it’s in the post, and once it does break out in full I doubt many people will be staying at home, whatever the powers say. I think it is a birch tree at the bottom of the garden that’s broken out this rash of catkins since I was last up there.

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Debutant pig

Sunday 21st February 2021, 11.45am (day 3,468)

Pig, 21/2/21

“Whaddya mean, in nine and a half years you’ve never had a pig on this blog thing of yours?”

“Nope, never.”

“I wanna be FIRST. (Oink.)”

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Snowdrops

Thursday 18th February 2021, 2.30pm (day 3,465)

Snowdrops, 18/2/21

These are little light bulbs, surely; strung up by Whomever to anticipate of the coming of spring. Will this be one of those years where it arrives and stays, or one where we don’t see it until May? The fun thing is, in Britain, you never can be sure.

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Vantage point

Wednesday 17th February 2021, 3.40pm (day 3,464)

Gull, 17/2/21

Life plods on, with little to do for entertainment except watch the local birdlife. The gulls (you can’t really call them seagulls: here, we’re about as far as you can get from the sea in northern England) seemed this afternoon to be making an intervention, for one side or the other, in the ongoing pigeon-duck war. This one uses a street light as a vantage point, moments before swooping down to pick up some spoils.

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The sun comes out, briefly

Monday 15th February 2021, 1.20pm (day 3,462)

Mermaid in car, 15/2/21

It was about 12ºC today, compared with -2ºC on Saturday. The sun shone for a couple of hours in the afternoon and, just for a moment, there were intimations of spring. This lady appears to be enjoying it, albeit from behind glass.

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Icicle creature

Sunday 14th February 2021, 11.35am (day 3,461)

Icicle creature, 14/2/21

I wouldn’t call this winter harsh, but it has been cold, at least by local standards. Yes, I’m sure those of you who live in places like Montana or Trondheim would laugh at our definition of real winter, but hey, that’s a maritime, Gulf Stream climate for you.

And the creature? Well, a face perhaps. It’s certainly got two eyes, and a pendulous, possibly melting face.

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Geese and snow

Sunday 7th February 2021, 12.50pm (day 3,454)

Geese and snow, 7/2/21

More waterfowl. Then again, more snow. Recurring themes, but everything is recurring. Overhead cables of whatever kind are usually an irritant, but I don’t mind them here.

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Duck shake

Saturday 6th February 2021, 11.10am (day 3,453)

Duck shake, 6/2/21

I wouldn’t usually put up a shot that was so out of focus but it certainly sums up the weather, and it made me smile that I had captured this duck shaking off the rain that fell constantly today. A smile was needed — life is run, at the moment, according to the whim of the weather and this was the most depressing of ‘weekend’ days thanks to the rain. A shame I couldn’t call this page ‘drake shake’ though.

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