Gently does it

Today’s picture is a splendid gorge in Macedonia where my ever restless sister Susan has recently been on tour.


I was following the new regime today and so I didn’t go cycling with Dropscone.  This wasn’t the loss it might have been because firstly it was raining and secondly, Dropscone came round for coffee anyway to brighten my morning.

Fortunately the birds were at their most active so I had plenty to look at while waiting for coffee.  I took the next five pictures in the space of three minutes and they give a flavour of what the whole day was like at the feeders.

greenfinch and siskin
A greenfinch sees off an invading siskin.
siskin and chaffinch
And regardless of size difference, a siskin sees off an incoming chaffinch.
siskins, chaffinch
A single chaffinch finds a gap in the midst of a maelstrom of siskins.
greenfinch and siskin
Such were the queues that even a greenfinch had to wait in line.
The other feeder was just as busy and a redpoll wasn’t happy about that.

Then  Droppscone came with tragic tales of short putts missed yesterday.  There is nothing more soul destroying than playing golf quite well up to the moment when a two foot putt slides by the hole, ruining all the good work.  He bore the spiritual scars manfully, disguising his pain but as I know to my cost, missing short putts is a hard habit to break. I wish him well.

After he left, I turned back to the birds.

Waves of siskins beat against the feeders.
A greenfinch touches down.

I did a quick duck check and can report that the ducklings have survived another day.  The drake was obeying the green cross code carefully before crossing Wauchope Street.

duck crossing
Don’t ask me why it wanted to cross the road.

Then it was time for a visit to my local doctor.  This went very well and we wait for my next visit to the consultant for further assessment.

On my way home in the persistent rain, I saw great numbers of swallows swooping low over the river and resolved to ignore the rain and to try to get a sharp picture of them after lunch.

Following the instructions from yesterday, I had a siesta after lunch and then took my camera for a very gentle walk to shoot the swallows.  In obedience to Murphy’s law they had stopped flying by the time I got to the river and I had to resort to traditional swallow pictures.


I walked up to the Sawmill Bridge, ignoring two herons but noting a passing oyster catcher.

oyster catcher

The river has dropped a bit in spite of the continuing rain and as a result there was a rock for the dipper to perch on near the bridge.


The Lodge walks are well leafed over now and the beech trees offered a welcome shelter from the rain as I walked up to see if I could spot a nuthatch.

Lodge walks

The Walks are lined with wild flowers…

wild flowers

And the nuthatch obliged with a brief appearance.


And then flew off.

flying nuthatch

I was serenaded by a cuckoo on my walk but failed to see a tree creeper when I visited the tree up which I had seen one creeping a couple of days ago.  You can’t have everything.

The nuthatches at the bridge seem to have flown the nest as there was no sign of them when I looked today so I had to return home without seeing them and make do with a redpoll on a feeder instead.


Following the new regime, I had a quiet sit down after the walk and then in the evening, I went to the Archive Centre with Sandy.  Jean had toothache and didn’t join us. I put my first entry for 1883 into the database and it is now covering 35 years of the paper.  Only another 12o to go.

We did our work with no visitors and in a break with tradition went to the Crown Hotel for our after-archiving refreshment.  They are serving Old Speckled Hen there and we enjoyed a pint of this splendid brew before going home.

In keeping with this spirit of innovation, the chaffinch of the day doesn’t come from the garden and is in fact two oyster catchers.






Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

8 thoughts on “Gently does it

  1. The suskin seeing off the chaffinch and the oyster catchers were the highlights for me today. I am glad that the visit to your doctor went OK.

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