Sand in the works

Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew.  He lives in Derby, one of the places affected by the recent heavy rain and found his route home blocked.  Luckily another route was possible so he got home safely.

derby underpass

After two visits to two cities in two days, I was very happy to have a quiet day at home today.  This decision was helped by a low single figure temperature and a cool wind to go with it.

I  roused myself enough to make some onion and potato soup for lunch and wave Mrs Tootlepedal off as she went to an embroidery meeting.

There was quite a lot of bird traffic in the garden in the morning so when I wasn’t doing anything else, which was most of the time, I watched the birds.

The chaffinches are beginning to return in larger numbers and they were hiding behind the old sunflower stalk…

chaffinch on sunflower stalk

…trying to stand up straight like their mothers taught them…

straight back chaffinch

…and flying off when they had had enough seed.

chaffinch fly by

One of the perches on the seed feeder has become unscrewed and fallen out, as a goldfinch discovered when it tried to perch on it.

goldfinch missing perch

Later on another goldfinch mastered the art of hanging on to the rim of the feeder.

goldfinch hanging on

Mrs Tootlepedal has put down some wire netting to stop the birds trampling down the soil near the feeder and the dunnocks are quite happy to tread on it.

dunnock on wire netting

Our robin was back again, looking pensive today.

sparrow on edge of tray

We only see one greenfinch at a time at the moment and it is hard to tell if it is always the same greenfinch coming every time, or a string of different greenfinches coming once each.

lone greenfinch

There are definitely at least two blue tits about as I have seen them at the same time but whether the seed fancier and the nut fancier are one and the same bird, I leave for others to decide.

blut tit on seed and nuts

After I had eaten my soup, I decided that I ought to stretch my legs a little at least and maybe see if I could find something interesting to photograph, so I went for a walk.

Although I did see a lot of black headed gulls…

four gulls on Ewes

…the walk was not a success.  Firstly, my sore feet played up, cutting down the distance I could walk considerably, and secondly my pocket camera gave up the ghost.  I had got sand in the zoom lens mechanism during our holiday in North Berwick in the spring and the camera has been moaning and groaning every time that I have turned it on since.  Finally, it has all got too much for it and it is refusing to focus at all.  It stayed firmly in my pocket and as I had a bird lens on my other camera, taking pictures of anything close was impossible.

I took a long view of some fading larches…

fading larches

…and admired some late colourful leaves…

late leaves

…before walking very carefully home.

As it was a very gloomy day and what little light there had been had faded, I didn’t even walk round the garden when I got home, but went straight in and found something reasonably useful to do at the computer.

I made a sausage and onion stew with green peppers and mushrooms for tea and then we sat down to watch Strictly followed by some excellent racing from the Glasgow velodrome World Cup meeting.  Watching other people taking vigorous exercise was the best way to finish off a slightly disappointing day.

I did get several flying bird pictures though and because I didn’t take any interesting pictures on my walk, I have put in joint flying birds of the day today to fill the gap.

A flying mallard passed me while I was gull watching…

flying duck

…and a traditional flying chaffinch of the day took a dim view of the missing perch.

flying chaffinch

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “Sand in the works

  1. I’m sorry to hear that the feet are acting up again and also sorry to hear about the camera. I had the same thing happen not too long ago. Cameras never seem to get cheaper.
    The robin, larches, flying mallard and colorful leaves made this a very enjoyable post.

  2. I’m sorry about your camera. You’re getting more visitors to the feeders I see. Good shots! 🙂

  3. Great bird and landscape photos as always. Your robins look very cute compared to ours in the US. Right now, it seems like all the birds have left. It seems this time last year the sparrows had moved in the Martin house but maybe they haven’t arrived yet. Soon I will be filling the bird feeders. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Sorry about the sand and the feet. Jackie was laughing at the standing up straight observation long before I got round to this one. Your comment about the tits reminds us that we wouldn’t be able to tell Nugget and Muggle apart without their different behaviour and territories – or even distinguish them from your robin.

  5. A splendid collection of photos: a wee robin, a stone wall, fall colours, and a flying mallard. I’m especially fond of all the robin photos of late 🙂 !

  6. Your brother’s photo is Raynes (!) Way in Derby…Mr C worked nearby for 35 years …he enjoys your posts too! Good to see you have some very characterful birds visiting again this year…a very upright chaffinch, a very knowing robin and a stressed greenfinch…there’s the characters now for the story!

  7. The scene at the feeder was as action-packed and the commentary entertaining as always, and I enjoyed the photo of Mallard Airlines over the water. A beautiful autumn day for walking there, even in grey weather. I am sorry to hear your feet are bothering you again, and the camera had sand in the mechanism.

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