Less sun, more light

Derwent in flood

Today’s guest picture shows the River Derwent in Derby in full flow after the visit of Imogen.  It was taken by my brother who lives in Derby.

Derwent in flood

We had a day without any hint of sunshine today but curiously, it was much brighter for the most part than yesterday had been.  This was not just a subjective view.  The exposure meter on my camera as I peer through the kitchen window does not lie about the light.

The relative brightness of the day was slightly marred by a gentle but persistent rain which dropped gently from the heavens for hour after hour.

I had two visits from a redpoll after breakfast.  They were about and hour and a half apart and I wondered if this was two visits from the same bird or one visit each from two different birds.

I think that the white feathers show that it is the same bird.

I will keep an eye out when I next see a redpoll to check if it looks the same again.

There were plenty of birds about in spite of the rain. The temperature had dropped a degree or two so maybe that was enough to bring them back to the garden.

busy feeder

Some birds had to be told to wait for their turn.

busy feeder

Others waited for a quiet moment and then dashed in and out.


I was spoiled with some scones to go with morning coffee when Dropscone came round after his customary visit to the gym.

After coffee, I put out some pellets for the jackdaws and once again was impressed by their pink pellet radar as they were on the scene within seconds.

Some held a watching brief and others held pellets.

The garden was full of blackbirds today.  You might think that all blackbirds are the same blackbird but as usual if you look at things closely, you can see differences….


..some more obvious than others of course.


The rain eased up for a while so I popped out for a quick walk to inspect the ducks.  There were plenty to inspect today.

Kilngreen ducks

Although our ducks are mostly standard mallards…

Kilngreen duck

…there are differences to be seen.

Kilngreen ducks

As well as the ducks, there were two other visitors who were very welcome as harbingers of spring.

oyster catchers
Oyster catchers having a paddle

There were workmen on the Sawmill Brig starting the repairs to the parapet which was damaged by falling trees in one of our gales.

Sawmill Brig

I walked over the bridge and up the Lodge Walks.  I am keeping an eye on a log pile there becuase it looks like a promising spot for fungus and I was rewarded today by spotting some shiny new ones.


When I came to the Lodge, I had to take the high road as the low one is still flooded….

Flood on castleholm road

…but this was not a bad thing as it gave me a chance to see the first signs of the snowdrops at Holmhead.


They are looking very promising and should be well worth another look in a few days time when they ought to be fully out.

I walked back along the river but the rain had returned so I didn’t dilly dally, stopping only for a quick catkin shot.

They are showing signs of spring too.

I hadn’t been at home for long when the phone rang.  It was Sandy asking if I would care to join him in a walk.  I had to decline because my mind was set on a cycle outing in the afternoon.

It took me a bit to get up the pep to put my gear on and get the bike out as the rain kept appearing and disappearing but I finally finished a tricky crossword and ran out of excuses for not going so I got up and went.

It was raining lightly so I opted for doing twenty miles  in my ‘outdoor gym’, that is pedalling three times up to Wauchope Schoolhouse and back.  There was enough wind to make the out and back journeys quite a contrast and my legs were in a very co-operative mood so I enjoyed the trip in spite of the dampness.

I made some sourdough bread during the day and it is baking as I write this so my plan is to have a slice or two of fresh bread and then retire to a relaxing tub to round off a gently pleasant day.

We may have a genuinely sunny day tomorrow and there is no rain forecast for the rest of the week.  We are quite excited.

A chaffinch appears as flying bird of the day.  There wasn’t quite enough light to catch a flying duck or oyster catcher.

flying chaffinch


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

31 thoughts on “Less sun, more light

  1. I’ve been incredibly busy with three local by-elections recently, and tomorrow way before crack o’ dawn I set out for Tanzania. So I doubt if I’ll be seeing your posts for a bit. Hope the rain’s lessened when I resurface!

  2. It must be fairly warm there if you’re seeing mushrooms like those.
    I can’t wait to see the snowdrops there and open catkins here, but we’re supposed to see the coldest weather of winter this weekend so it’ll be a while before we see any open catkins.

  3. I do hope that you revisit the snowdrops when they are open, as it’s good to see signs of spring in other places. At least it was a light rain falling as you cycled, and your legs must not have complained too loudly. Sounds like a good day despite the rain.

  4. Those snowdrops look very promising and your oyster catchers appear more well groomed than ours. Thanks for the closer look at things…common mallard or not, nothing beats that flash of emerald green.

  5. Love the opening catkins; I will have to keep an eye on the ones near here. The snowdrops are lovely already. I hope you post a picture in full bloom. So cheerful.

  6. My favourite shot here is definitely the fungus. You’ve captured the glistening surface very well and the light looks lovely in the gill shot. The snowdrops look lovely in the woods and the heads of the ducks are a startling green.

  7. Alas, I got all the way down here and found that Jane had already said what I was thinking. Really, those fungus images are particularly striking. And I’m always glad to see oyster catchers.

  8. We have oystercatchers on the river here too and today there were Canada geese. Interesting to look at the differences between birds of the same breed.

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