In the late afternoon, I noticed a flock (or is it flight?) of racing pigeons above. I’ve grown up in an area of the South Wales Valleys where there are still many racing pigeon enthusiasts. It’s a sight I’ve been familiar with since childhood, racing pigeons exercising in the skies above me.
A harder frost this morning, solidifying the mud underfoot. When I went for a walk with the woofers around mid day, I could hear the crunch underfoot. Pretty frost patterns on blades of grass.
I stepped slowly and mindfully across the playing field grass tuning in to the crunching sound underfoot. High in the nearby trees there was the background music of the birds singing.
Colour contrasts today… noticing the darkness and lightness of fresh new growth and buds.
In the afternoon, I spotted a male blackbird near one of my pyracantha plants in the garden. I saw him peck and remove a berry. Berry and beak fused in the distance. They were both the same orange-yellow colour.
A little later in the early evening whilst I was typing a letter, I heard the familiar call of the Canada Goose. I imagined them flying overhead in ‘V’ formation like a squadron, heading for the park I’d visited earlier in the day.
I am reminded of Mary Oliver‘s (1986) poem ‘Wild Geese’, here’s a few lines …
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
A New Year seems like a great place to begin Nature Diary III, my ongoing experiments with noticing nature around me.
Today on 1st January 2019 I visited Aberdare Park located in Trecynon near Aberdare.
The first thing I noticed was a female sparrowhawk (Accipter nisus). Blurred in the photo taken on a smartphone. What a spectacular bird to see on a walk in the park. Other birds noticed today : a treecreeper and nuthatch.
Light conditions caught my attention. I noticed the subdued afternoon light over the lake and a brighter blue sky over Llwydcoed in the Cynon Valley.
There were plenty of squirrels darting about, some more brazen than others. When I waggled my arms at some of them they creeped up closer to me expecting to be thrown a tasty nut.
The green daffodils shoots are beginning to push through the soil. My rhubarb stalks at home are about the same height.