Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Midwinter life?

A walk round the Trail today required thick clothing layers in the freezing, stagnant air we have at present. Ice was not that thick on Dingle Lake but ice was even sheeted across the Park path below the springline. Very little stirred - except at the pond. High in the Alder trees were several Goldfinches - and something else. Nine little brown birds with cherry-red foreheads - Lesser Redpolls! Last winter there were Siskins here instead. But Redpolls are commoner this winter. And they and lots of other things are turning up in odd places in this weather. An hour after seeing them, I was opening the door of my own garden shed when a Snipe, no less, rocketed up from the flooded field by me. Hard times can alert us to remarkable sightings. Though perhaps none more remarkable or significant than the sight of that Baby in the stable - George