Tuesday, 27 March 2012

26th March - Staring at the Sun

With the change to British Summer Time comes the lighter evenings, and while we are experiencing this warm unseasonable (or is it?) weather I wanted to take advantage.  Old Down Wood was the destination once again.  The tits were calling from the tops of the larches, and I slowly made my way through the wood, just listening for something different.  This approach paid off with another pair of Marsh Tits close to the footpath crossroads.  They were calling to each other as they foraged around the bark of the larch trees.  At one time they were joined by the now all too common Treecreeper.

On the main path running north to south, I picked up another black headed bird, thinking maybe Willow Tit I waited to get a good view only to find it was in fact a male Blackcap.  This was my first since the female in the garden in January.  It was moving through the branches feeding making it difficult to photo, and at no time did it call or even attempt to sing.  This was the best I could get.

A little further on a Nuthatch paused in the sunshine from ripping the bark from the tree.  The sun was dropping now, and the heat was going out of the day.  The bonus was though the way the light gave a golden glow to almost every scene.

The light was catching almost all the new growth,and these are some examples of the effects it could create.

Hazel leaves, spider webs and midges

New Bluebells
Shadows on the fields

Glowing Catkins
Brislands entrance to Old Down
last Friday I had seen Nuthatch and Great Spotted Woodpecker fighting along Brislands, and this evening I think I found out why.  A Nuthatch was clearing out a hole in the willow tree, in fact the hole was beneath another hole previously used by woodpeckers.  It would move from the hole to a branch, where it would strip the bud before returning to clearing the hole.  It is a very big opening, so if as usual the Nuthatches intend to board it up with mud, then they will need quite a bit, and it would not be safe from woodpeckers.  Maybe they can use some cement from the nearby building works.  Either way it will be interesting to see who finally uses the tree to nest in, I do not think they will live in harmony.

After watching the antics of the nuthatch for a while I headed back along Brislands for home.

Another exceptionally clear night allowed me to get the crescent moon with Venus.

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