Sash window view is framed by Wisteria; dark, late summer leaves with just a hint of yellow. Robin’s ‘tic..tic..’ calls penetrate the glass; air with bite slips up between the panes. Further framed by woodland each side and riverside trees below, grey and yellow early evening sky nears sunset: a black dot swoops, stalls and dives; late Swallow hawking high over the village.
This could only be September…..
No cider this year: only Bramley cropped at all, that decimated by Grey Squirrels. Of promised windfalls of an entire orchard, only two trees of thirty hold fruit, neither sufficient to justify pressing. March was like May but March in May kept pollinating bees in hive with serious results throughout Britain.
Early flocking Mistle Thrushes last noted, plus similar Meadow Pipit behaviour at the coast, may presage hard winter, as may excited calls from upstairs engendered by a blunt-headed, copper-grey Slow-worm weaving stiffly over bedroom carpet last week.
Time will tell….
Meanwhile, on the beach, a joy to find first soft grey Knot of winter amongst smaller, scaly-backed Dunlin with a neat little Sanderling trotting and delving black-legged and black-billed in Bladderwrack, shades of summer russet over pure white winter plumage with just a shoulder streak of black.
With about 26 gallons of water fallen on every square yard (2.2” rain) here in two days, the river is sluicing down, coffee-brown, through the village; hopes of late Sea Trout as it drops and clears.
Another heart-lifting moment on the morning run as a neat, blue-black dart slips into consciousness, rising up over Gorse & Bramble, banking dark and compact against a grey landscape. Slipped behind, out of sight; then, ‘whoof..’, over the left shoulder, down the dry-stone wall, and ‘hupp..’, clearing the wired wall top to turn and stall into breeze.
Wildlife Wales Activities: www.wildlife-wales.co.uk