Today’s picture was taken by my sister Mary on a Thameside walk this morning. I am going to have to up my game if my family start sending me pictures like this.
Our spell of sunny weather came to an end today but, as a compensation, it was slightly warmer and Dropscone and I were able to pedal round the standard 20 mile morning run. I took the belt drive bike as the road is pretty rough in places and I don’t want to break my speedy bike. Luckily, the council have mended some of the worst potholes on the Canonbie to Glenzier section. The mends seem to have been patched in carefully and it will be interesting to see how long they last. The journey was uneventful but a very chilly east wind made it a bit of slog at times.
Dropscone had nobly risen above my snide comments about his shop bought cake of yesterday and had brought some of his excellent home made scones to go with the coffee. I thought that this was a great improvement.
I looked out of the window for a moment when he left to get ready to play golf. Surprisingly to some perhaps, it was easier to take pictures of the feeder today when the sun wasn’t out and there were no shadows to deal with.
The feeder was as busy as usual.
I did a little shopping and then had an early lunch as Cat Barlow had told me that she was going to be ringing birds at the Moorland Feeder Station. When I got there, she and and Jenny, a pupil from Langholm Academy, had unfurled the nets. It was absolutely freezing in the chilly east wind and the wind also made the nets billow out a bit too much so that they were quite visible and only foolish birds flew into them. This was born out by a skimpy catch in the nets and the fact that most of the birds caught had already been ringed. This robin stood and watched calmly while Cat untangled the catch.
All in all it wasn’t a very successful ringing session and when Sandy came up to join us, he and I sat and bird watched while Cat did her ringing and recording.
We caught a glimpse of the obligatory woodpecker…
…but in general, they were keeping well away from all the fuss.
A female pheasant surprised us by flying up to one of the tall feeders, a very rare sight.
You can see the furled net lying inconveniently across the middle of the picture. I made an effort to make it disappear digitally on another shot.
I got an uninterrupted view of a gaudy male. He was practising standing on one leg.
I took a couple of pictures of a great tit just because I think they are handsome birds.
Everyone’s hands were very cold by this time but I was able to take a picture of the workers before we packed up.
Sandy came back for a cup of tea and a biscuit and then he went off to do some Archive work and I made some preparations for the evening choir practice.
Our musical director was unavoidably absent so I had the pleasure of taking the choir myself tonight. It was hard work as we have got some tricky arrangements to sing and there is a wide variation in the ability of choir members to read music. I am going to try to find some easier music so we can enjoy some singing without having to work our socks off.
A flying chaffinch obliged.