Getting the picture

Today’s guest picture was sent to me by my friend Bruce who was visiting Hawick today.  It shows his terrier Guthrie posing in front of the statue of Jimmy Guthrie, the celebrated racing motor cyclist.  Bruce thought that this juxtaposition might appeal to me and he was right.

guthrie in HawickOn the instructions of my legs, I took a rest from bicycling today.  This was a pity because it was a sunny day but not too much of a pity because there was a brisk breeze blowing.

It was my day for filling the Moorland bird feeders and Mrs Tootlepedal joined me when I drove up after breakfast.  I filled the feeders while Mrs Tootlepedal scanned the skies with her binoculars.  Wherever I looked, I could see pheasants searching for seeds fallen from the feeders.

pheasantThis one was very anxious to get a portrait taken so I obliged.

pheasantOn the feeders themselves, there was very little action with just a few chaffinches….

chaffinches…and the occasional blue tit.  Mrs Tootlepedal was having a great time watching five buzzards circling above.

I think that this pictures of the five birds captures the excitement well.  The bigger dot on the left is actually two birds.

Not having brought my binoculars, there was little for me to enjoy so we soon headed back home.

Mrs Tootlepedal was beavering away in the garden for most of the rest of the day but I confined myself to a little compost turning in the morning and mowing the middle lawn in the afternoon.  The lawn has got some alarming brown patches developing but from a distance it still looks reasonable for the time of year.

lawnThe border at the far end of the lawn is one of the ones that Mrs Tootlepedal has been clearing out but she has left some marigolds and rudbeckia to keep things looking cheerful.

During the day I took the camera out into the garden from time to time and mixed flowers and insects as the light suggested.

A close look at a sunflower.
busy bee
A busy bee
A second flowering of the chives.
hoverfly on orange hawkweed
A hoverfly on orange hawkweed

I broke off to make some potato soup for lunch.  Our main crop Sarpo potatoes make excellent soup as they tend to cook a bit mushy.

In the afternoon, I mixed more garden wandering with getting fifteen pictures selected, treated and printed for the Eskdale Agricultural Show which is on this Saturday.  I find it very hard to select pictures from the large numbers in my files and never really think that I have chosen the best.  After staring at thousands of thumbnails for an hour or so, my brain goes even deader than usual and I start selecting wildly.  Luckily Mike Tinker came in when I was nearly finished and as a result of his advice, I junked one of the most boring pictures that I had chosen and put a better one in.

In the garden I had another look at the sweet peas which have appeared among other flowers.

sweet peaI enjoyed the big and small yellows on a sunflower and a pansy.

sunfliwer and pansyWhen I was indoors, I tried to catch a flying bird but they were hard to come by today.

flying chaffinchAnd when I was outdoors, I tried to catch a flying bee without much success either.  I got one just after it had landed on a sedum….

bee…and one flying into a nasturtium.

flying bee…but I couldn’t catch one in the air when the light was at its brightest.

In the evening, Mrs Tootlepedal and I went off to our Langholm Community Choir, Langholm Sings.  Our accompanist is in hospital so we had to make do as best as we could with our assistant conductor at the piano.  She is not a pianist but did very well to keep us going.  We seem to be preparing for a Christmas concerts with both our choirs so we may be fairly fed up with Christmas carols by the time that December comes.

My best effort at a flying bird of the day was this chaffinch.


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “Getting the picture

  1. I like it when you name the birds in each photo. They are all new to me. I live in southern California but often read about them in the nature books I have such as “The Natura lHistory of Selbourne”. The red breasted one is a male chaffinch, is that correct? It is a very pretty bird.

  2. I am so very pleased to have found your blog. I was looking for gardening blogs, and it seems fitting to have stumbled upon yours. My only goal this summer was to purchase a new bike. Other things came up, and I did not make the purchase, but I have not forgotten the goal. I’ve been reading you for a couple of weeks, and it’s so refreshing…the photos are amazing, and I just appreciate the sharing of your life. Thank You! BTW, my favorite today ~ A close look at a sunflower.

  3. You will never get fed up with Christmas carols — believe me. I wish I were still singing. Mrs. Tootlepedal’s garden is very beautiful, and so are your photos. Every day I look forward to seeing them.

  4. Another winner of a sweet pea. Hope you do well with your chosen pictures for the Eskdale show.
    The lawn and borders are spectacularly wonderful!

  5. It’s fascinating watching the birds, such as those buzzards, they are vying for territory. I’ve seen robins, in my back garden, herons, alongside the canal, dippers, and even kingfishers posturing and even fiercely fighting, trying to secure a patch for themselves to survive the on coming winter months.

  6. We have a lot of new pheasants about that haven’t a clue about the dangers of cars and aren’t too scared of humans. All released recently along with swarms of Red-legged Partridges, poor things. And poor us once the shooters start banging away all round us any minute now. The sunflower close-up and the sweet-pea were my favourites.

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