Saturday, 29 December 2007

Saturday 29th December

After yesterday's day release-I was confined to looking after the kids again this morning. Staring through the windows at breakfast I managed to pick out the crucifix-shape of a Cormorant flying south. The resident Sparrowhawk seemed busier than ever, the swarm cloud of Fieldfares/Redwings/Chaffinches heralding it's arrival.
I manged a brief trot out late afternoon, taking a brief walk from South Street, Barming across to Rectory Lane. Some of the Alders have been left (intentionally?) with their top branches overhanging the footpath and they looked ripe for Siskin or Redpoll, but neither species were seen. It was interesting, and encoraging, to see that a new apple orchard was being planted with (Braeburns on M9) - at least one site in Maidstone the developers haven't managed to get of hold of! A Green Woodpecker was frantically pecking around the disturbed earth, getting it's fill before the sun finally dipped beyond the valley.
As I neared home I stopped to get some photos of the old barn that sits alongside South Street opposite Church House. It's a wonderful old building, with curvaceous, weatherboarded sides, not painted white, but oozing eau de tar. It is topped with a weathered corrugated-iron roof with another wall composed of the same stuff. All very photogenic, but it it had gave me a reason to stop, and I'm glad I did as a Kestrel and Sparrowhawk locked talons almost immediately above where I was standing. The screech gave them away, but for a good minute or so they pursued and tumbled, pursued and tumbled until the Sparrowhawk made good it's escape. Needless to say the sky was full of every bird that happened to be on the ground!


Steve of Kingsdown said...

Great story of the scrap between sparrowhawk and kestrel. Their interaction hasn't ocurred to me before, and it's fascinating to know that they are competitive.

Simon said...

Happy new year to you Adam. All the best for 2008. Simon

Tony Morris said...

Happy New Year Adam, I like the Barn photos, it always amazes me how interesting pictures are to be found from things and places we take for granted.
best wishes,