Restless

Spring is coming.  Leaves are starting to break from their buds and in the country lanes blackthorn blossom is emerging.  The few daffodils that survive our heavy soil are in bloom along with the gorgeous hellebores.  Bright yellow forsythia and the small blue and pink pulmonaria join the primroses and winter heathers.  When the sun shines and temperatures rise a little the first honey bees and bumblebees have been making use of this new source of nectar and energy.

Blue Tits and Great Tits are inspecting the nest boxes for suitable homes in the not too distant future while the Blackbirds and Song Thrushes are starting to find their voices.  Yet things seem a bit restless.  It’s still a little early and far from warm, though we have not had a proper winter it may not have finished with us just yet.

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Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea) on the old lock wall

Mid-week and with the prospect of a little sun I took a look at a section of derelict canal a couple of miles from home.  I was delighted to see a pair of Grey Wagtails in the old lock.  These gorgeous birds are more at home on fast flowing streams but with the lock gates long removed forming a waterfall they looked well suited to this habitat.  The strong wind cut right through you and half an hour was long enough for my fingers to go numb but these birds were obviously getting the spring urge.

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Male Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) in the neighbours pear tree

Back home and from the comfort of indoors I managed to get this pleasing shot of a male Chaffinch.  Lots of birds visit our neighbours feeders and they are in easy view of the bedroom window.

This period in 2018 we had the ‘Beast from the East’ with heavy snow blocking the roads.  In 2019 we enjoyed two weeks of sun and temperatures in the 70’sF and five species of butterfly in the garden.  This year its been storms, gales and periods of heavy rain and none too warm, the joys of living in England!  And this photographer is getting restless too.

44 thoughts on “Restless

  1. Lovely shots, Mister B, especially the Chaffinch.
    Hope it warms up soon.
    Been roasting over here in Jo’burg, but today it has thrown it down like a perishing monsoon, and it’s still raining cats and dogs as I type.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Ark I’m quite pleased with that shot. Raining here too (again) don’t know if it’s mentioned on your news but some parts of the UK have horrendous flooding especially around the river Severn and we have another big storm coming this weekend!

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      1. I don’t watch our news and have not done for years.
        In fact,I am so ”out of it” it was John Zande who lives in Brazil who informed me of the verdict in the Oscar Pistorious murder trial a couple of years back.

        So , no, I have not seen the weather on our news, but I recall reading on Tish’s blog how bad it is there.

        Batten down the hatches, Mister B!

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  2. March … isn’t that when your rabbits get all harey? All ours do is duck for cover at the slightest intimation of a human being anywhere around. Except—if I go for a walk about dusk, they linger a few seconds longer …

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      1. Going into a-bit-too-early autumn here right now. But there’s a huge difference between UK bunnies and NZ’s rabbits. I was delightfully surprised in Scotland when rabbits were playing on the lawn; here you catch only the quickest of glimpses—but they’re there, in droves. As for camera, with a telephoto/zoom or a really good magnifier on the ol’ photo-processor, furgeddaboudit~!

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  3. I can relate to the restlessness, starting to get the itch to head out on the weekends and exercise the shutter finger. Unfortunately, we still have a good amount of white stuff covering our ground – hoping March brings us some better birding weather. Pretty Grey Wagtail and that Chaffinch is a stunner – two birds we don’t get to see here in the States.

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      1. Snap to post lag is the constant quandary … but if retirement comes my way as soon as I think it is those issues will be resolved – damn day job keeps getting in my way of fun ha!

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  4. Superb photographs of a couple of colorful birds, Brian!

    Perhaps your tremendous amount of wet weather will result in a bumper crop of insects which will, in turn, result in a bumper crop of bug-eating birds posing for your lens. (Yes, I am an eternal optimist.)

    Here’s hoping your Spring will manifest sooner than later and cure your case of “cabin fever”.

    All the best for this new week.

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    1. Appreciate that Wally. I think what will help the insects is the fact we have had no freeze up so there should be a good survival rate. The rain should provide an abundance of plant life too so I’m very optimistic for the coming year. It will nice to get the macro out again.

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  5. Grey wagtails are underrated birds, and your photo – and its setting – does them justice. A couple of years ago one dropped into our garden for a few minutes. We felt honoured, but he obviously wasn’t impressed as we never saw him again!

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    1. The theme I use is ‘Orvis’ which is designed for photography and has the portfolio page. This theme allows me to put high quality images on my blog but comes at a price, the images use up a lot of gb’s. I could use smaller files but that would defeat the object especially with the macros.
      I’m on the ‘blogger’ plan which gives 6gb of storage space for £2 a month. I’ve used 50% so far and delete a lot of older posts to allow for future ones.

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