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Monday, 31 December 2012

Travelling the Fields

I had made up my mind this year to try and obtain closer inspection of Feldefare and Redwing and hopefully some images – but they are so easily spooked and difficult to get anywhere near.

So I set off across the Fylde, in an orderly fashion, heading west then north in the hope of finding some out in the hedgerows of 'the Moss' only I didn't get anywhere close. I drove a different route than normal, to no avail and found myself on a roundabout near Kirkham, out of the corner of my pork pie and off to the left in the surrounding hedgerow I 'trapped' my suspects – (hey another reference to the blog title!) – have you ever driven the whole way around a roundabout more than once? Hours of fun! Baffles other drivers! At least you can see if you are being followed!

I parked up and headed towards where I had seen the birds, without getting run over (not easy nowadays, cars don't stop any more, not even for a blind man with a white stick and a limp, pushing a pram, believe me!), only to find they were off as soon as I avoided the traffic! But then I noticed some blackbirds, obviously feeding on berries on another part of the hedgerow. So working my way around to the other side of the hedge, where there was a public footpath (doh), I could see Fieldfare up in some tall adjoining Silver Birch trees. 

Sit and wait was the only option but there was virtually no cover, except a small sapling or two by the footpath. I didn't see any brass monkeys, it was too cold! Absolutely perishing, my fingers went numb in all of ninety seconds. Grim and grim some more. And sure enough, within five minutes small numbers of Fieldfare and Redwing descended onto the hedge – only on the far side of where I was stood, out of sight. Gggrrrrrrrr...  I could see them moving through the hedgerow and could only freeze some more and wait for some to show. Then of course the obligatory dog walker passes spooking everything out of the hedge back into the tall Silver Birch. Repeat. Repeat again... and again. Oh and did I mention the constant stream of passing artics that sent them off for cover elsewhere? After much gnashing of teeth (the only moving part left)  – the results follow.

I eventually prised my frozen feet and body from the grass I had conjoined with, creaked back to the car as the sun sank below that one horizon cloud and planned another visit. It then rained for forty days and forty nights and when I returned all the berries had gone and so had the birds.

I look forward to 'travel through the fields' again in a new year. (At least I feel I know my adversary a bit better from the encounter, which in iteslf is a delight).

Best wishes for 2013 dear reader.

every one a 'lookout'

and always on the lookout – why do they also seem to stare in your direction or am I paranoid?

I haven't quite finsihed the ark but I am taking bookings... numbers limited (I think it's two, must read up)

A nutty time of year

"Well the weather outside is frightful..." 

Some from the archives I never got around to posting...

Blue Tit – 'cheeky chappie'
Jay – the first rays of sunlight

talk about seeing the whites of their eyes; in the original you can see the detail in the iris – for identification purposes!

everyone likes Long-tailed Tits
too many Chaffinch about with bumblefoot
Reed Bunting

(name that tune, answers on a postcard to....)

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Photographing sheep... nah

I have been remiss in not posting recently, either been getting wet or archiving and sorting the housekeeping (of images).

One clear day found me (along with a few others) out looking for some photos... I decided I wanted something different, primarily back-lit images but it didn't really come off.

I should make this two posts as there are too many dodgy images, but can't be bothered so it will be one long one! No award-winning photos, just a record of what these birds do and views of the plumage.

It doesn't half make a difference when the sun comes out...

the last two images were taken elsewhere, early on a July morning in 2012 – silently creeping up on me when I wasn't looking! 

I wasn't complaining!

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Dreaming of Glencoe

A magical experience in Glencoe, worth all the effort... and on the way up a herd of red deer on the hillside just below the bottom right of the photo...

... and memories of running the Under 18 Northern Counties Cross Country Championship... and came 11th 

when I was aged just 14!

These deer images are from Lyme Park near Disley (south east of Stockport) and bring back memories going back fifty years, including the Glencoe trip.