Friday, 20 March 2009

Friday 20th.March 2009

Just when you thought it was safe to read a blog without mention of breakfast :-
I was having breakfast this morning , Branflakes and banana , when a small bird flew in with about 20 Chaffinches , but , whereas they went straight down to feed on the seed on the path , this one perched on the bird bath in front of the rockery . I could see it was smaller in size , and could make out that it wasn't a Goldfinch . Breakfast left , I dashed up to the back bedroom window and grabbed the camera . It was still there , watching the Chaffinches feeding on the path . I managed one shot before it flew along with all the others when a neighbour opened their window . I blew up the shot on the LCD monitor , which confirmed my suspicions , a Redpoll .
I stayed by the window , and waited for the flock to return to the seed . After a while , the Chaffinches returned but no sign of the Redpoll . After a while , I happened to look in the neighbour's Laburnum tree , where I found the afore mentioned Redpoll . Once again , everything was put up when a dog started barking . Once again , I waited , and my waiting was rewarded with not one , but two Redpolls , who nervously landed on the lawn and started feeding . They didn't stay long , but , just before they flew off , the two male Bramblings flew in . One landed in the Laburnum , right next to a female Chaffinch . This was the more colourful one , whilst the less colourful one , headed straight for one of the feeders , and proceeded to tuck in . I promise that is the last time I will mention breakfast , unless of course , something else interesting turns up . The rest of the morning was taken up with shopping and a trip to the tip , but I did get out after lunch .
I have now seen quite a lot of frogspawn in the wild , so set off for High Elms to see if I could find any toadspawn . The first three ponds that I visited , all had frogspawn but no sign of any toadspawn . I must admit , I got a bit distracted and headed for Burnt Gorse , to see if any early butterflies were showing . Surprisingly , in this sheltered spot , I only found a single Comma . What were numberous were Beeflies . Along the woodland edge , there must have been 15/20 , busily going about their business . Very identifiable from that long probosis out in front , like an in flight refuelling pipe on a fighter aeroplane . The only other thing of interest found , was the dry heads of Carline Thistle , which will last well into the new plant growth this year .
Eventually , at the fourth pond , after looking 3/4 of the way round , I found what I was looking for . In an area where the submerged vegetation almost reached the surface , both frogs and toads had spawned , knowing that the vevetation would keep the spawn near the surface , where it would get the full warmth of the sun . The frog spawn in a mass , top left , and the toadspawn showing dark in translucent strings . Up close it can bee seen as a sort of double row of eggs in the string .
Finally , I post a shot of two eggs . The one on the left is a large chicken egg . What is the other ?
No nest robbing was done to get the white egg .


Warren Baker said...

Hi greenie why don't you eat your breakfast upstairs ? It would save all that running up and down! Redpoll is a good species to get in the garden though, and with Brambling as well!

PS. the egg looks like a Little owls.

Ken Browne. said...

Hi Greenie. I reckon you must be getting quite fit, what with all this dashing up and down stairs. I like the shot of the Toad spawn. Also nice to get Redpoll on you home list.
By the way Greenie, do you know what the egg is??

ShySongbird said...

Redpolls and Bramblings! Some folk have all the luck.

Not much good on eggs but at the risk of making a fool of myself, how about Collared Dove?

Adam said...

Redpoll and Brambling in the lucky bugger!!!!


Steve said...

Starling egg is my guess Fred.