Today’s picture is another from my siblings’ current visit to Spain and shows the water feature in front of the Catalan National Art Museum in Barcelona.  It was captured by my brother.Catalan National Art Museum

We had a very nice sunny day for the most part today but as Dropscone and I found out when we went to Waterbeck for our morning pedal, there was a pretty strong and chilly wind blowing from the west.  I spent most of the ride puffing along miles behind Dropscone and then, to his justified annoyance, whizzed past him when he waited for me at the top of the final hill before a downhill rush home.  The whole thing was not a triumph of teamwork.  Still, the scones were as tasty as ever.

As Dropscone has got a borrowed bike at the moment, there was an unlikely moment when he actually washed it before taking it home.  I was impressed.

When he had gone off on his clean machine, Mrs Tootlepedal and I cycled up to the Moorland Bird Feeders as I was filling in for one of the usual volunteers.  It was glorious as we pedalled up the hill, with a bit of warmth from the sun imparting a definite feeling of spring in the air.

going to the feeders

View from Broomholm

I was distracted by a flash of yellow on a tree beside the road.

Sensational lichen
I would have passed this by without looking twice in times past.

It was chilly and muddy in the shade of the trees at the feeders so we didn’t linger.  In contrast to our sunny ride up the hill, our return trip downhill was accompanied by a violent hailstorm.  Luckily, we were under trees for most of it and it had stopped as quickly as it had started before we arrived home.

Once home, I checked on the frog army.  The picture below is of poor quality but I have put it in because it was the best that I could do and I think I can count twenty frogs at least in it and there more out of shot.

frog swarm

I took some individual portraits as well.

three frogs
Under the bridge
Soaking up the sun

After lunch, Mrs Tootlepedal went off to work and I went up to try to offer my friend Arthur some assistance with a malfunctioning computer.   Its ills were well outside any small area of competence that I have in these matters so I left him to seek more useful help elsewhere while I collected our car from the garage and drove home.

At a recent camera club meeting, the lecturer was extolling the use of continuous shooting.  I haven’t tried this before so I had a go today at some chaffinches in the sun and got some promising results.  I will have to get used to the extra work that producing so many shots entails.

I was looking at wings.

chaffinch wings

chaffinch wings

chaffinch wings

I looked at some flowers too.

This will be our first daffodil of the year in a day or two if the weather permits.
Like the primroses, these wallflowers have been in bloom all winter.

The sky above the garden was full of rooks circling the town in a noisy procession.


After a pause to grapple with the crossword, I drove down to the Kilngreen to see what was to be seen by the river there.

dancing ducks
There were dancing ducks

Then I went home and put my boots on and walked up to the new bridge on Gaskells Walk.  The men had worked wonders in manoeuvring the heavy beams into place.

Gaskell's bridge
Handrails almost complete

It may not look much from the path but seen from below, it is quite a construction.

Gaskell's bridge

I hope to be able to photograph (and walk across) the finished product soon.

I took a roundabout way home and noticed an exciting slime mold on my way.

slime mold

Some time during the day, I took a picture of a perching chaffinch for those like Mrs Tootlepedal who prefer a calmer bird.

perching chaffinch

In the evening, I went to the Archive Centre with Jean and Sandy and rounded off a pleasantly busy day with an hour’s data entry with appropriate refreshment to follow.  If any local reader has read this far and has a Common Riding programme to hand, a correspondent has asked us if we can tell him who won the hound trail in 1909.  I seem to recall that the programme has a list of hound trail winners  in it.

The flying bird of the day was a dancing duck who had achieved lift off.

flying duck





Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

34 thoughts on “Variation

  1. What a busy day! Love the sunning frogs, and the wings are very successful. Today I heard the first song of the a Spring from a chaffinch, and saw the first pied willie wagtails back. It’s Spring – thank goodness!

    1. Xanthoria hasseana seems exactly right. I knew that you would come up trumps. My lichen book is in the post (I hope).

      Sorry about your weather. It must be getting beyond tedious by now.

  2. I know what you mean about rapid shooting (turbo lens speed) – so many more photos to review. Then you can ask yourself “this one” or “this one” a few hundred times over. It’s very exhausting, but rewarding! Loved the dancing ducks. 🙂 ~SueBee

  3. How much outdoor activities that you did has to be a sure sign of spring and better weather arriving!

    All the photos were very good, but the second lichen photo was particularly good, as I have tried and failed to get a photo of that quality of that species of lichen in the past.

    I may have to try continuous burst mode with my new camera. I used it from time to time with the old one, but it never worked well for me.

  4. All too easy to say but excellent blog,Thanks. and a response on the Hound Trail Winner! its wonderful ow many people has that information delighted?

  5. Some splendid pictures – I like the frog soaking up the sun. The bridge builders seem to have done a fine job. Glad you had such an interesting day.

  6. Beautiful colors. First the wind and then the hail, though, seems like more excitement than anybody needs. Seeing so many frogs makes me happy. And the continous shoot worked very well.

      1. I’m thinking now it’s always quite rushed and uncertain, that stormy space between ice and water…glad it was over soon.

  7. Beautiful wings, love the attention to tiny details since you have gotten so interested in fungi and so forth, and I envy your frog pics. The noisy frogs outside are elusive when I go look for them. My old house had bigger frogs (not bullfrogs, leopard frogs I think) that let me photograph them lounging in the pond.

  8. Love the frogs! They look so cheeky. The lichen you found was superb and the continuous shooting bore impressive results. I e had a few attempts myself so I k ow what you mean about all the extra photos.

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