Sunday, 13 June 2010

Baby housemartins

About 20 baby housemartins at the gate at the end of Totley Hall Lane - all landing together to peck at some wettish mud. Of course, I didn't have my camera with me...

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Oak, Totley Hall Farm

I love 'em. Can't bear to think what the landscape might become...

Oaks could be wiped out....

Just found this article on the Guardian website. Has anyone else heard of this?

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

and more...

...and a fieldfare this morning definitely eating the hips off the rosa rugosa...

Monday, 11 January 2010

Winter visitor

A redwing seep-ing in our back garden today keeping an eye on the birdtable - and maybe the rose hips. Although I've seen fieldfares and redwings in the fields, I've never seen one in the garden before. I think it was also hanging about yesterday - probably young and definitely on its own...

Thursday, 7 January 2010

A sleepless night, birds and more snow...

A disturbed night in which I finished reading Tim Dee's new book "The Running Sky" - quite the most beatifully written book on birds I have ever read - in fact probably one of the most beautifully written books I have read about anything. Here's a little wintry sample taken from a longer section about starlings flocking:

"A rougher magic overtook them as they arrived above the reeds. Great ductile cartwheels of birds were unleashed across the sky. Conjured balls of starlings rolled out and up, shoaling from their descending lines, thickening and pulling in on themselves - a black bloom burst from the seedbed of birds. One wheel hit another and the carousels of birds chimed and merged, like iron filings made to bend to a magnet."

This morning, at the edge of the wood, the kick-kick of a great spotted woodpecker - and there he was sitting high in a tree, the white of his wing stripes picking up the white of the hill.

Here's Maisie's favourite spot for a good run.

Sunday, 3 January 2010


Old Brock is about. Hard to dig in such a frozzer.

Fanshawegate fields

Despite the snow, flappy rooks inspect their nests just outside Greenoak Park. Up on the White Lane, two great tits are flirting. Do they know it's a new year?
From Fanshawegate Lane there's the kew-kew of a kestrel. It sails over to settle in the very top of an oak - lacy brown back, dark band on tail.
Tiny sledgers crump-crump up Sheps Hill.