Today’s picture shows a very colourful display at Kenwood, London. It was taken a couple of days ago by my sister Mary who has resumed her walks.
We had a very sunny day here but the forecast heavy winds from the north also appeared making it quite chilly if you were out of the sun. The winds also gave me a convenient excuse not to get the bike out. This was fortunate because my legs had called it a day as far as cycling went after quite a heavy schedule over the past week and I would have been embarrassed by my struggles to pedal up any hills.
I was able to put the time to good use and mow the middle lawn and run the hover mower over the grass round the greenhouse and the drying green. The sight of a neatly mown lawn always lifts my spirits so I was quite cheerful in spite of being a bit tired. I also used our strimmer with its new battery. The tremendous vim with which it dispatches unwanted vegetation makes us realise that we should have changed the old battery about two years ago instead of struggling along with it.
I dead headed some more daffodils and they have almost all gone over now. The tulips are in transitional state.
A glance into the pond in search of tadpoles to photograph revealed two cheery grown up frogs instead.
New flowers and plants are appearing all the time now.
Some well established plants still please the eye.
Having finished my mowing tasks, I got out the slow bike and pedalled through the park and along the river to inspect the bluebells. They were worth inspecting.
I cycled on down to Skippers Bridge and back on the other side of the river. I passed a heron with its back to the river….
…and admired the blossom along Elizabeth Street.
When I got home, I found that the visible frog population in the pond had doubled.
After lunch I got out my big lens and focussed on a pair of goldfinches high in the walnut tree.
I am hoping for some decent weather this summer so that I can get some practice in with this lens (150-500mm). It takes a bit of getting to know. My grip is so wobbly that I probably need to use the image stabiliser function or get used to taking my tripod with me. It is all a bit of a weight to carry about so I need some good weather to make it worth the trouble as I want to be able to settle down for some time when I have got everything set up right.
Sandy arrived and we went off to the Moorland Feeder Station as we wanted an outing that didn’t involve any exercise. As an experiment, I left Sandy behind the screen…
…while I set up a little stool among the trees and watched the birds on the other side of the glade with my big lens still on the camera.
Although I was sheltered from the wind, Sandy was getting pretty chilly in the open so we didn’t stay too long and headed off to watch harriers from the comfort of his car on the moor. The hills are definitely beginning to show some green at last.
We saw two hen harriers doing an aerial food pass which was exciting but the birds were too far away for a good photo. I put this one in just to record the fact that we did see a harrier.
The powers that be have put up a feeding post near one of the nests and when the chicks fledge, they will put food on it and it should be possible to get a good picture of them then. They think that there are three pairs on the moor this year.
I had to have an early tea because the choir committee had a meeting to consider the arrangements for our forthcoming concerts. We just managed to finish the meeting before it was time to go to the practice. The choir are singing a small number of songs, most of which we can sing not too badly so perhaps the concert will go well. One or two of our efforts need as much work as we can possibly fit in but the main attraction of the evening is to be a visiting tenor singing a selection of popular tunes and we will shelter beneath his wings.
The flying bird of the day is a greenfinch, quite a rare visitor at the moment.