Sunday, October 11, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
This morning's walk near Grenoside was a little disapponting on the fungi front. I found a few bay boletes and that was it for edible species. A couple of stinkhorns - "before " and "after" and a few russulae were the only other things spotted. On the bird front, I managed a photo of a wren, and spotted a jay. I also heard a woodpecker, along with a few other tantalising bird calls that I was, of course, unable to identify. The leaves are only just thinking about turning and the grass and other plants are past their summer flush, but not yet ready to die down.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Saturday, September 05, 2009
Saturday, August 01, 2009
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Yes, I know it's an RSPB reserve, but
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Sunday, May 31, 2009
I made a start on leg 10. I was hoping to get as far as Midhopestones, and count the section from there to Langsett as done (completed on one of Rob's walks), so my next leg would be Langsett to Dunford Bridge. Realistically that was never going to happen, so I'll have to fill that gap in a week or 2. Of to Sunderland for work next week, and then a weekend in Edinburgh next weekend.
Monday, May 25, 2009
At home, the garden is growing furiously, and soon my favorite section will be in bloom. The combination of a warm and dry April and a mild and wet May have meant that things are growing quickly. The thuggish rose on the arch has more flowers than ever before and I'm just hoping that the squash plants, which have been disappointing for the last few years, will take off and produce some fine crops.
There have been lots of swifts overhead recently, and on the feeders there seems to be a proliferation of house sparrows, and great tits. There has been high drama over the last 2 days, firstly as an unfledged blackbird looking very sorry for itself, found itself on the patio. Not sure what was its fate, but I think it might have managed to get under cover of the undergrowth. Then today, the presence of a very bold little tabby high up in a neighbour's tree caused pandemonium with a number of blackbirds and magpies collaborating successfully to drive it away. Calm has now been restored.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Monday, May 04, 2009
Meanwhile, in the garden, the bullfinch is still putting in a regular appearance, as are some greedy starlings, a robin, dunnocks, collared doves, blue, coal and great tits. Next weekend, I am determined to do a long, leisurely solo walk so I can concentrate on the photography and wildlife. I just hope the good weather returns. More pics on Flikr.
Monday, April 20, 2009
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Flowers: the bluebells were just starting – amazing as there was no sign of flowers just a few days ago – but the real glory were wood anemone and celandine in huge swathes; also violets, primroses, wild garlic, hedge garlic, marsh marigold, butterbur....
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Learning about birds does not lend itself to multi-tasking with walk checking as well as I had hoped. Nevertheless, I was able to watch and take photos of this grey wagtail, and note a great crested grebe and some Canada geese and heard lapwing. I think a heightened awareness of birds and birdsong but not being able to pick up on what many of them are, is a frustratingly necessary stage of trying to become a more knowledgeable birder.
I finally got to the garden centre on Thursday and yesterday, seeds were sown: courgettes, borlotti beans, butternut squash and leeks. Today saw a bit of tidying and topiary, with occasional dashes for the binoculars and camera. A pair of starlings made a couple of visits to a hanging worm feeder; it's the first time I can remember starlings in the garden for ages. I could hear lots of different songs as I worked but I can't identify them, apart from the blackbirds.
Not sure how much work will get done in the garden when I start the new job in just over a week's time. I'm really looking forward to it, but I'm going to have to make sure I make time for the garden and walks. A new routine will be needed, if that's possible, with lots of travelling in prospect.
Saturday, April 04, 2009
Difficult to say which were my favorite bits: the mosque in Cordoba? the Generalife in Grenada? the art gallery in Seville - Murillo, especially - what a pity he just painted religious paintings; his technique was awesome. Probably the ceramics everywhere we went, but especially in the Marie-Luise gardens in Seville.