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Earthling

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Autumn Sunrise

I discovered this morning that some of the grapes growing on the netting of the chicken run are turning red - first harvest coming up :D

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Mz Terry

I did my Big Garden Bird Watch yesterday. It is an informal survey organised each year by the RSPB in the UK. I chose a good hour to watch, by chance, and saw 11 species of birds. They included two great spotted woodpeckers, a song thrush and a pair of robins. :)

I have trees and hedges in my garden and worry about the trend for empty, "tidy" gardens with nothing to provide shelter and habitat for wildlife.

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vervain

Yay, the birding thread ! I did my Big Garden Birdwatch this weekend too, no winter thrushes this year (or indeed any other kind of thrush) but I was very excited to see a goldcrest come and peck at the suet cake thing -- I knew they were around, but had never seen one come onto a feeder before.

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Qutenkuddly

The girlfriend and I got snowshoes. All the snow melts. Go figure. :p

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Skycaptain

I've just seen my first butterfly of the year, despite it being cloudy and the first week in February, a Red Admiral which must have overwintered

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vervain

Wow (they're beautiful). It is crazily mild this year.

As a postscript apparently a fieldfare turned up on Monday as soon as the birdwatch window was over. This is just typical :lol: I love fieldfares though so I'm hoping it will at least stick around long enough for me to swoon over it this weekend :wub:

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teatree

I don't know much about bird species, just the obvious ones in the area. I love seeing male cardinals, though--they are so bright and cheery and have such a distinctive call. Sometimes I will look outside and see 6 or 8 all in the same bush...and then I have to look harder to see the females, "hiding" with their comparatively drab feathering.

I am trying to learn about distinguishing animal tracks in the snow, but alas, snow has been scarce this winter. I was to attend a tracking workshop today, but it got canceled due to poor conditions (too much rain and ice), only to have it snow rather unexpectedly yesterday morning, leaving about 4 inches behind!

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Mz Terry

I saw a bittern in the reed beds in the local park. Also kingfishers. The bittern is a rare visitor indeed.

3240.bittern-2.jpg

Not my picture, but it was this hard to spot. A birder with a scope saw it first and then we all managed to through our binoculars.

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Autumn Sunrise

Awesome, Miss Terry :D I remember reading about the bittern many years ago - in "The Swiss Family Robinson", I think - but I've never seen one before. The reeds make a perfect camouflage!

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Skycaptain

They are very elusive birds

" once bittern twice shy" :-P :-P

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Qutenkuddly

They are very elusive birds

" once bittern twice shy" :-P :-P

OW.

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teatree

Oooh, Miss Terry, that was a groaner! (But I did laugh....)

Hey, check out this eagle cam: http://www.berry.edu/eaglecam/ It's a nest cam from Berry College in Georgia. Two eggs should be hatching any day now! I just shared this with a friend and thought I should share it on this thread as well.

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Autumn Sunrise

Fabulous pictures, teatree - I love bald eagles. Have you seen the Decorah eagles website?

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vervain

Miss Terry, so excited for you seeing a bittern ! :D Did you hear it calling too, or is it the wrong season ?

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Mz Terry

@ vervain If it is male, it will probably fly to somewhere with a larger reed bed and start calling. That won't be long now.

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vervain

excitement ! a sound I long to hear...

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teatree

The eagle chicks hatched--one on Sunday and one yesterday. Very fluffy and cute!

In my neck of the woods it has been very cold (below zero F) for the past few days but today it is already warmer by about 30 degrees and expected to get even warmer and then rain. What an odd winter. Overnight we got about 2 inches of snow topped off by a thin crust of ice. Makes shoveling a little more sweat inducing!

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Mz Terry

Snow showers here this morning.

Driving back through the countryside with the radio on playing Dives and Lazarus by Vaughan Williams, I saw a kestrel hovering over a field. What a beautiful bird, and how beautiful its movement as it hovered. They can remain practically motionless, this one was lowish and ready to dive, I think, and quivering in the sky.

https://youtu.be/poC8G5kv9UI

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teatree

Went for a walk (about 6 miles) today with a friend, on the dirt roads and trails near her house--it's sunny and in the 30s today. It doesn't look like spring yet, except for most of the snow is gone. We saw a porcupine in a field--he/she was BIG and waddled over to the woods as we watched. Would've loved to have seen it up closer....

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Tja

Went for a walk (about 6 miles) today with a friend, on the dirt roads and trails near her house--it's sunny and in the 30s today. It doesn't look like spring yet, except for most of the snow is gone. We saw a porcupine in a field--he/she was BIG and waddled over to the woods as we watched. Would've loved to have seen it up closer....

But, not too close :P

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Alphaprocess

Compared with my last place where there was an abundance of varying kinds of birds in the trees out back, here the birds are mostly sparrows, pigeons and the occasional magpie. However there are two large parks nearby which would be good for birdwatching. I just have to make the effort to get in touch with the local birdwatching society.

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Autumn Sunrise

We have wild ducks on our property, and sometimes we see a pair with ducklings; but sadly, most of them don't seem to survive very long (predators, I guess :( ) However, a couple of weeks ago we spotted a pair with 10 tiny babies - they looked to be about the size of sparrows. Since then, we've been seeing them regularly - the latest sighting was today - and there still seem to be 10 :) They're losing their fluffy "tiny baby" look, and beginning to look like sleek little versions of their parents. Obviously the parents are very vigilant - they won't even let other ducks near their babies, and they seem to be taking very good care of them. Fingers crossed . . .

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Mz Terry

I see ducks flying over the river here, and occasionally in the garden, but no fluffy ducklings sadly. I was excited to hear the chiffchaff calling yesterday in the park.

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Autumn Sunrise

I observed our little duck family having swimming lessons on the dam yesterday - SO cute. The second time I saw them, there were about twenty adult ducks ranged along the edge of the dam, apparently acting as lookouts - but not allowed to swim while the babies were there :D Those parents are awesome!

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Mz Terry

I'm picturing the little ones in rubber rings and the adults with whistles to blow when bad behaviour is noticed. :P

They sound gorgeous. :)

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Autumn Sunrise

Tee hee, Miss Terry :lol: They are very sweet :)

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Autumn Sunrise

Saw the duck family again this morning - there are still 10 young ones - yay :D They're getting a lot more independent now; the parents are still looking after them, but letting them explore a bit more and not keeping them so tightly bunched.

Keep safe, little ones :)

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Mz Terry

Lovely to see the lambs out in the fields today in the spring sunshine. One was feeding from its mum and waggling its tail. Always a sweet thing to see.

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Qutenkuddly

I've been itching to go fly my kite for the last couple of days, but it's been just a shade too nippy.

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daveb

I've been itching to go fly my kite for the last couple of days, but it's been just a shade too nippy.

I take it you're feeling better then? I hope it soon warms up enough for you to go fly a kite!

(I confess, I just wanted to tell a mod to go fly a kite)

just kidding! :D

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