Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye, 2009...

Jackdaw
January is Big Garden Birdwatch time and a gang of Jackdaws turned up to demolish my bird food stocks

Bee on Chaenomeles
This bee found some early-flowering Chaenomeles in February

The mirador
At the end of March, I spent a few days in and around Tarifa in southern Spain. Here's a view across the Estrecho to Morocco

Beetle larva
Tried a bit of pond-dipping in April, and found lots of these guys - diving beetle larvae.

Broad-bodied Chaser
Also in the garden, this maturing male Broad-bodied Chaser perched on a nettle on a May day

Blue-tailed Damselfly
In June I somehow managed to take this arty photo of a Blue-tailed Damselfly, which won The Guardian's competition and got printed! Woohoo!

Large Skipper
July was the time for Large Skippers and long evenings


Swallow fledglings
While in August, we watched broods of young Swallows in the garden

Small Copper
The summer was over, but there were still Small Coppers to see in September

Autumn leaves
And October brought its own delights in the form of autumn leaves

House Sparrow
We caught some more House Sparrows during ringing in November

A blur of activity
Er, here's one I took earlier this month: hard weather in December made life hard for birds

You can browse the whole year's photos here

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Ice

Ice ice baby

Ice ice baby

photos taken with Canon Powershot A640

It's cold outside

A blur of activity

Going outside is interesting now we've experienced an Extreme Weather Event (TM). People living outside the UK may be amused to hear that we've had about five inches of snow locally (though some other areas have had almost twice that) and again, we can't really cope.

I managed to get to work (where I took the above photo) in about twice the normal time but we got sent home early in case it got any worse.

At home, I've been out in my jimjams (and a fleece) to feed the birds before doing anything else. At the moment we've got black sunflower seeds, peanuts, niger seed and a fat-filled coconut out, and I've also found some porridge oats and sultanas (I'm not sure if anything has eaten the sultanas - maybe the Jackdaws).

The snowy garden

It looks festive and fun for us humans, but I'm sure the birds don't appreciate the thick coating of white stuff everywhere. Hopefully my small efforts will help see them through the tough conditions.