We have had quite a variety of weather over the last few days. On Saturday it was high winds with damaging gusts, this morning we had a hard frost and the pond and bird baths were frozen over again. Once the temperature rose we had grey skies for the rest of the day and now it is pouring with sleety rain. Yesterday though it seemed as though spring was on its way. Although it was a very cold morning it was bright and sunny and I decided to wrap up and go into the garden. My main reason was to tidy and clean up the bird "feeding stations" and to make sure the drinking bowls were fresh. However, once out there I realised that it was very pleasant and after I had sorted out the birds' feeders I stayed out for about an hour and a half tidying up, a bit of weeding and picking up the twigs and branches that had blown down from the trees at the weekend.
Very enjoyable and I would have stayed out longer but my feet were beginning to go numb even though I had warm socks on under my wellies. Also the birds were beginning to get cross with me as they were anxious to get down to feed and my presence out there was putting them off. The blue tits were definitely chattering and the robin was sat high in the maple tree, singing away.
At the weekend I bought a coconut to break open and place in a strategic position in the hope of enticing some of the smaller birds. It had broken into two pieces, about one third and two thirds in size. I managed to put some string through the larger piece and hang it onto a small tree within view of our window but the smaller piece I wedged in between the branches of another tree.
Once I was back indoors it didn't take long for the birds to come down and I stood in the window watching them for a while. At one time there were six male blackbirds on the lawn, mostly just feeding and not really bothering each other. I'm sure that won't be the case for much longer, when they begin to establish boundaries. Also, there are now three robins visiting. I'm fairly sure two of them are "a couple", if you see what I mean, but the other seems to be very unwelcome, and I took a photo of two of the robins in a stance that seemed to indicate a "stand-off".
We have a few trees and thick hedges in the garden so I am hoping for a robin's nest this year.
However, this afternoon I was looking out at the garden and saw one of the squirrels with something. Watching more closely I realised it was the smaller of the two pieces of coconut - the one I had wedged into the branches of a tree. It was now on the grass and the squirrel, I thought, was trying to nibble the nut. I was wrong - he eventually managed to grip it in his teeth and made off, hell for leather, down the garden to wherever he stashes his "bounty"! I wonder how long it took him to dig a hole big enough!
Messing about on the River
1 week ago