Thursday, 20 March 2014

Mind Change

Thursday March 20
We'd intended birding at Sculthorpe to-day. Somehow, the early morning drifted away and the very strong wind added to the reluctance to drive that far. Eventually we went to Barton Broad where there would be some shelter from a south south -westerly.
The wind didn't deter and the sun encouraged, a carr full of bird song, Robin, Wren, Chaffinch, Cetti's and several Chiffchaff. Our first Barton Marsh Tit was a bonus. We haven't had one visiting our garden feeders since before Christmas.
Checking on the progress of the slime is deteriorating, in five days the top brown clay coloured edging has spread.

Sitting on the bench on the end platform, enjoying the sun on my back, watching the strong squally wind send dark clouds of ripples scudding across the water, was very pleasant. Several pairs of Great Crested Grebe had no intention of displaying for me, the biggest action was a threatening dash by one male at another.

Two first year Mute Swans approached each other, making what must be a sibling display of greeting. Heads dipped to one another and then simultaneous neck shapes and water dipping. I've not seen that before. On cue, an adult appeared, steaming through the water to see them off. It was probably the male, female now on the nest.
A Welsh nursery rhyme about a swan translates as ' in his boat of white satin'.

Willow catkins are starting to appear

Another new experience yesterday. Pam called me to the kitchen to watch two Robins displaying on the boundary wall. The male stood, neck and beak reaching to the sky, turning its head from side to side. The female stood in a semi-crouched position, head stretched out, bottom raised, as if playing statues. He did not oblige...they flew into next door's garden, out of sight.

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