Monday, 25 May 2015

Red Letter Days

Early May was a little disappointing weather wise and hence quiet for birds too.  Most striking was the coolness in the air with vegetables stalling in the ground after Easter planting.

The traditional scattering of Cherry petals continues apace, the strongest winds seem to regularly coincide with the delicate and short lived flowering of Japanese Cherry and Snowy Mespilus.  Hardier by far are the tulips and Saxifrages, the latter still flowering after four full weeks of colour.

Tulips and Saxifrage: enough to brighten up a dull May (c.OOS)

The flowering of Sallys or native willows is also prolific, right now the pollen blows across the lawn in loose furry balls. 

Top attraction to these flowering trees was the appearance of a pair of Bullfinches, happy to avail of the abundance of flower and seed buds which they consume with great gusto: have you ever seen a Bullfinch without a residue of its last meal pasted around its large globular beak?

Bullfinch at work in the Sallys (c.OOS)

They have a thickset, well fed appearance with that bull neck, but of course the male is adorned with the showiest of rose pink combined with smooth grey and black, with a white rump showing well as the birds hang awkwardly, stretching for another morsel.

Male  Bullfinch showing large, disc shape bill: (c.OOS)

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