Monday, 6 May 2013

Spring at last

Things appear to be realising Spring may just be here after all, and unusually the bank holiday was fine and warm. Today the Lympne heronry needed counting again, just to confirm the first count on 27 April of 12 nests. There was then little by way of flowers. Today I was pleased to find Bluebells and Early Purple Orchids in flower having struggled to find anything other than small rosettes of leaves. The orchids in particular must have grown like express trains in the 9 days since 

See what I mean compared with my binoculars - amazingly large specimens 

I couldnt resist the light on these 3 spikes

The Heron nests are often difficult to make out up in the Ivy and among the Rook's nests

It's also important to me to reduce disturbance to a minimum, so I try and keep my distance - even so I am watched all the time!

Today's visit failed to discover any new late nesters. In fact I was only able to find 11 nests, and I'm fairly certain I double counted one at the first visit
Back home to the Swallows. A single male turned up here on the 28th - 8 days ago - much to our delight after last year's disaster. (You may remember they didn't breed, indeed we didnt see them at all after about the middle of April, remember how horrible the weather was?) Since then he's been coming and going, displaying and singing without much luck. During lunch today I noticed 2 birds in (or rather over) the yard. Hooray and much rejoicing, he's found a girlfriend at last, and boy, was he putting on a show. They've been dashing in and out of the garage all afternoon ans she has been down in the garden picking up bits to line the nest. When I sneaked down the lane to take a photo after getting back from Lympne they were copulating. He doesn't waste time, does he? Good luck to them both

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