Just hanging out

Juvenile Blue Tit
Juvenile Blue Tit

Another week of a little bit of everything, weather-wise. Still, I have worn my all-weather coat all through the summer and now things are cooling off a bit it is really coming into its own. He has to get wrapped up like a mummy before we venture beyond the garden gate – you should just see the performance – it’s just a good thing I’m naturally so patient. As you can see the main difference between summer and winter for us dogs is that in summer we just walk straight out of the door when we go for a walk, whereas in winter we sit and wait. And sit and wait, and wait, while our walking comrades envelop themselves in layer after layer of clothing.

You can see from the picture that the skies were that sort of no-colour grey. He says looking at the sky is like trying to fill in a newspaper crossword with a 2H pencil. Newspapers aren’t bad for tearing up but they do tend to stick to the roof of your mouth. I can’t comment on 2H pencils.

The picture is of a bird. How enthralling is that? I don’t have much time for birds. There are so many places on our route with really interesting scents and he want to show you a picture of a bird? What can I say? It takes all sorts, I suppose. He says to tell you that this is a blue tit. It is still young and won’t have its full uniform of yellow chest and blue cap until it grows up in spring.

That’s probably why it’s content to sit in the hedge amongst the sparrows for now.

Startling

Starling
Starling

Well, the big news for today is that it isn’t raining – yet. Today, Jackie wanted to clean and dust. The Dog likes nothing better than to get into a argument with the vacuum cleaner. Dog and vacuum and furniture makes cleaning complex, so The Dog and I went out for a walk while all that was going on. It was a dull, grey day but that nasty cold wind had taken the day off and temperature-wise is was quite pleasant.

On the way back, as we passed the big pine trees that grow up the back of our hill an agitatedĀ guttural bird call drew our attention upwards. Whoever it was, was quite high in the ivy covered tree and it took a while to pinpoint the source of the noise, I certainly wouldn’t call it bird song. With a quick point and click we snapped a few photos. Not sure if we had actually been pointing the camera in the right direction, but not wanting to prolong whoever’s agitation we carried on home.

And here’s the picture, a starling. Quite a surprise, we hardly ever see starlings around here. According to the RSPB, they have been having a tough time lately and have needed to go on the Red List of birds needing a little extra TLC.

Starlings are good mimics, and people who are interested in how humans first learnt to speak have been studying what the birds mimic and why, to see if they can pick up a few hints.