Stirrings of Spring

After a wet and windy night I awoke to a bright, sunny, crisp morning here at Haremoon Cottage. The sky was so clear the near full moon could be seen to the east.

moon110214While I was admiring the moon a flock of about 30-40 birds flew over head with some breaking away from the main flock who then landed on trees at the back of my garden.

murmurationI managed to get this photograph before they took flight again. as you can see the birds are mostly Starlings, a flock of Starlings is called a “murmuration.” In Irish the Starling bird is called Druid.  I like to think this is because of their  feather colouring which if you get a chance to see them closely, is a shinny green and blue black, with tiny white and light blue spots, really very surreal. also the Starling is a great mimicker, taking on sounds of a number of different birds, telephone ring tone, car engines and even like one master mimicker we had a few years ago who used to mimic the long screechy electric guitar notes my son used to play when he was practicing his heavy rock music.

If you look closely at the right of the photo you can see three birds which I think is two Redwings and a Fieldfare. These birds are winter visitors from Scandinavia. They often flock together along with the Starlings.

windsnow

However, the blue sky very soon gave way to dark grey and the wind picked up, with snow following.

mr robin

Mr Robin left off his courtship dance to feed up  – while

mrs robin

Mrs Robin waits for him.

It could be that this is Mr Robin and the one above feeding is Mrs Robin, I can not tell the difference between them.

bluetit more

The snow begins to stick and the birds become more loud and active, coming quite close as much to say “can I have more food” like this little Blue Tit.

bbirdruncoverBut the snow and the wind continues to increase, the Blackbird runs for cover and me also to the comfort of a wood burning stove. Please remember to feed the birds at this time of year and to put out fresh water as it can freeze over –  they need water for keeping their feathers in good shape for insulation as well as for drinking.

But Spring is Stirring regardless of the snow.

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