Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Birds


A 'birdy' post today. First of all - the swallows are massing to leave us. I really do think we are a staging post on their journey South. One day there will be several hundred on the wires and the next day there will be none. The farmer took this photograph before I got up this morning (isn't it good that he participates in my blog?) - actually he took it in the wrong mode on my digital camera, but it seems to have come out alright. There were several hundred swallows there. At present there are none (mid-afternoon).

He has been cutting grass for a neighbour this morning on the top of the hill above our farm and he saw a flock of about twenty grey wagtails - a sure sign that Autumn is coming when they begin to flock together.

Finally - do you remember the pheasant who laid her eggs in the middle of our pasture. I took a photo of her nest and we decided that she had hatched four out of the eight eggs. We saw her this afternoon as we walked round the pasture with Tess, and sadly her little hatching is now down to one - the other three have disappeared to predators. Tess put her up in the grass and the young one followed its mother into the air. Nature works like this of course and I don't expect she remembers that she had four to begin with - but we are sad just the same.

My chicks progress. We thought there were five hens and three cockerels - however, a fourth 'hen' is developing a comb and it now looks as though there are four of each, so it is four to lay eggs and four for the pot!

15 comments:

George said...

I'm a little late catching up on things, Pat, but I want you to know how much I enjoyed this post, as well as your last one. I also wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed getting to know your son, Dominic. We had some great conversations, and I remain delighted that he was able to join Robert and me for a couple of days of the walk.

Heather said...

Sad to think of autumn so quickly upon us Pat - it seems no time at all since you mentioned the arrival of the swallows. Thank the farmer for his photograph.
It is also sad that Mrs.Pheasant lost so many of her young, but that is the way of things in nature.
You won't mind the lack of the newlaid eggs quite so much when your hens stop laying, knowing that you have four cockerels for the pot.

Pondside said...

A raccoon has taken four of our hens in broad daylight, so they are now all locked in the coop until we can find the nasty creature. Normally we only have to lock them in at night. We need a rooster, but our closes neighbour got very agitated last year when we had a rooster, and we don't wish to irritate him at all.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thanks for the comment George - lovely to know you enjoyed it all and have got back home safely. Perhaps we will meet one day when you come to the UK again.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Heather - I am going to have to steel myself over those birds for the pot but know it is a sensible thing to do. They may have a fairly short life but it will be a happy one.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Pondside - luckily we do not have a neighbour to get agitated about the rooster crowing - they can be rather noisy early in the morning.

Sorry about the raccoon - sounds worse than our foxes.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Pondside - luckily we do not have a neighbour to get agitated about the rooster crowing - they can be rather noisy early in the morning.

Sorry about the raccoon - sounds worse than our foxes.

angryparsnip said...

I can't believe your talking about Autumn already.
We are still in full hot summer mode in Arizona. Our weather has been a little strange this year but Summer usually lingers into the end of September. Then we have the most glorious Autumn that we all welcome.

What a wonderful photo today.

cheers, parsnip

MorningAJ said...

It really is feeling autumnal today and we still haven't been on our summer holiday. It had better improve for a week or two!

Dartford Warbler said...

We shall expect your Yorkshire swallows over our southern fields in a week or so. They will be swooping and feeding on insects from the muck heaps as they travel through. We must be one of the last Swallow-way Service Stations before they make that perilous flight over the English Channel towards Europe, Africa and their winter homes.

Our resident swallows are still here, but the youngest brood has fledged so they will not stay for long.

I`m sorry that Mrs Pheasant lost all but one of her brood. Still, I suppose that the predators have to eat.

Gerry Snape said...

I love the new profile photo Pat...
I get quite qa lump in my throat when I see the swallows and swifts massing to get ready to fly south.
Enjoy the "pot au poule!" when the time comes!!

Gwilym Williams said...

A sure sign summer is coming to an end. Many places no longer have wires for them to perch on. It's becoming a rare sight now.

Dominic Rivron said...

I always like pictures of birds on wires, especially if the wires resemble a stave and the birds suggest tunes.

Tom Stephenson said...

Swallows on telephone wires are a very early, visual childhood memory for me, Weaver. I don't recall seeing them in such numbers since.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thank you for the comments.