Thursday, 11 December 2008

Deep and Crisp and Even

Cor blimey it's brassic out there. But just lovely. We've had a week or so now of clear skies and heavy overnight frosts, glorious winter weather. Mind you driving back through the lanes last night after a trip to London, it was a bit lively on those un-treated roads.

(For those of you into beat-combo-hip-to-the-jive music, during a break from our "workshop" at Television Centre, we went and saw Take That recording for Top of the Pops Xmas Special - apparently they're a well known band)

Anyway back to the birds, as this cold snap is bringing them into the garden now. On Tuesday I had 2 male Blackcaps in the honeysuckle, which was a real treat. I tend to get one maybe a pair in the garden in the winter as they come in for food, but 2 males is a real treat. So this morning before dawn I was out replenishing the feeders, hence the photo above.

Still a bit dark to see much, but the Jackdaws and Carrion Crows were in full song as they flew past, a few starlings did their weird "peheew" call, a Wren was chip chipping somewhere, a Blackbird silhouetted against the tree proclaimed its territory and would have made a fab photo, had I not left the flash on, and it was off. Yesterday before going to London, about 15 House sparrows invaded the feeders, plus half a dozen Goldfinch.

I know it's cold and dark and one doesn't want to leave a warm cosy bed, but go on, go out before dawn one day when the air is still, frost on the ground with the aim of quietly listening to the emerging birdsong as the sun rises, rather than trying to watch them. It's a truly atmospheric experience in the winter with less foliage to deaden the sound and if the air is still, birdsong travels for miles.

Oh dear, the smoke alarm is going off, that means my bacon is probably quite, deep and crisp and even!!


  1. That's a great shot, as always, BR :) We have had a few visitors in the last two days. A wonderful whooper swan was in the field behind our garden and today a lovely fox jumped over the stone-dyke wall into the garden :0 I feel so honoured when they pay me a visit. It must be the fox who has been eating all the food I've been putting out for the hedgehog as I've seen different droppings around lately...

  2. It is a tad on the cold side! But I'd rather have cold if we have sun and blue skies than anything warmer!!

    One of these frosty mornings I must get out of bed earlier and zoom of to my local patch.

    I recognise the "nipping out in the early morning to fill up the feeders" - often in my PJs!! Lol

  3. I was up and outside on the deck this morning at 4:30. It seems you're getting the frosty weather and we, my dear, have a temperature of +17 C. Both myself and him inside are shaking our heads in wonderment. It's almost surreal!

  4. How wonderful Wildlife Gardner to have a Whooper Swan on your "garden" list

    Tricia - make sure you don't get arrested by behaviour like that :-)

    Oldcrow, are you sure you're both not just headbanging !! As you say strange weather these days.