Tag Archives: nature

Sheep at the trough

Friday 6th January 2023, 3.15pm (day 4,152)

Feeding sheep, 6/1/23

There is just such a look of contentment on the face of this sheep, as it has a rest from its communal troughing. I guess with all those fleeces on each side it must be pretty warm and stuffy down there; no wonder they were all taking breathers now and again.

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Beneath the drop zone

Sunday 18th December 2022, 4.05pm (day 4,133)

Drop zone, 18/12/22

It is known that birds are relatively intelligent creatures for their size, so as I crawl through this null time before Christmas, trying not to think about work, questions come to mind, such as — do they deliberately crap on people’s heads, or is it all an accident? This old metalwork crosses over a street in Hebden as it links two buildings, and whatever it once was, it is now prime pigeon perch; and always worth a look upwards, before any attempt to pass beneath it.

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Swan salon

Thursday 1st December 2022, 9.40am (day 4,116)

Swan salon, 1/12/22

Beside the boating lake in Southport is clearly the place to be if you are a swan concerned about your appearance. These four were just a few of the many there who all seemed to be engaged in some kind of preening and cleaning activity, in or out of the water. But as someone with a lot of hair themselves, I know that it is tricky to keep one’s plumage tidy. It’s nice that they seem to do it as a social thing, like elderly ladies gathering in a salon.

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Fungus field

Sunday 27th November 2022, 10.40am (day 4,112)

Fungus field, 27/11/22

I’m not confident enough to start picking and frying random fungi that I come across along the way, though I know some who will do so. These look tasty enough to me though. As pictured in the garden of the B & B, but a less gratuitous shot than yesterday evening’s.

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Red kite

Friday 25th November 2022, 2.00pm (day 4,110)

Red kite, 25/11/22

Certainly a red kite, a species of bird that was close to becoming extinct in the UK some decades ago, but thanks to a number of programmes of reintroduction, now making a fine recovery. I caught a number of these on camera in Wales some years ago, but those were coming to an organised feeding station. This one was as wild as they come, soaring on the thermals above a road in Lincolnshire. It turned into the sunlight just as I had it in the sights.

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Horse chestnut

Friday 18th November 2022, 10.05am (day 4,103)

Horse chestnut, 18/11/22

Last day in Oxford on this trip. While having a cup of tea outside the museum (in the same place depicted on Tuesday), in more pleasant sunshine, my eye was caught by the profuse fruit on this horse chestnut tree. In my youth all these would have been harvested for the playing of conkers, but apparently Health & Safety has done for that tradition, at least officially. Mind you, all of these were some distance up in the air, so I guess they will come down in their own time.

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Castle Mill Stream, Oxford

Tuesday 15th November 2022, 3.20pm (day 4,100)

Back to Oxford, so I can perform an aspect of my job that still does bring pleasure, and sit in a library for at least two days. The walk to my accommodation took place partly along this stream, a branch of the Thames. Perhaps I did this shot, in spirit, on Saturday, but I’m doing it again. Note the heron hanging around inconspicuously in the centre, hoping that the prey won’t notice it.

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On the water, Brighouse

Saturday 12th November 2022, 1.15pm (day 4,097)

Duck on canal, 12/11/22

High pressure and warm air idling up from Spain, apparently, made this surely the warmest and most pleasant November 12th in my lifetime — even on St Helena last year it was not as nice as this. I refuse to consider this a bad thing: not on the day, at least. I’m sure the ducks think it’s better than the alternative as well.

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Busted by the jackdaws

Thursday 27th October 2022, 9.45am (day 4,081)

Two jackdaws, 27/10/22

“That human is taking surreptitious bird shots again.”

“Hah! All that stuff about ‘not repeating himself’… Such rubbish. We’ve been on here before, I’m sure.”

“Yes, I remember that one. Glad you’re talking to me again now.”

“Hmmm, well, I’m still a bit miffed with you but I’m getting over it.”

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Robin Poser

Wednesday 26th October 2022, 2.55pm (day 4,080)

Robin poser, 26/10/22

What is it with robins as a species — why are they, more than any other type of wild bird, so completely unfazed by being a few feet away from a human? Not only that, but a human who has stopped walking, and is pointing a camera at them? This one even hopped from side to side for a minute, offering me a selection of poses. This one won. I hope he approves.

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