We've still been out and about in the Chilterns though and still keep finding wonderful things ...
I walked around Grangelands this week and was struck by how quiet and bare it felt. The orchids and wildflowers that carpet the ground in the spring are gone, there are no butterflies and beetles to be seen and even the huge Roman snails have hidden themselves away for the winter. It all feels so different at this time of year, but there was still plenty to see. I stood and watched as a kestrel hovered just ahead of me. It hung in the air, head down, scanning for prey, before swooping down then returning back to hover above me. Such a wonderful sight.
As I walked through the edge of the woods, I disturbed a flock of redwings that were making the most of the berries in the hedgerows. They flew ahead of me and landed in the trees, only to be disturbed again as I carried on walking. They migrate here in the winter and are a member of the thrush family. You can tell their redwings because they have a cream stripe above their eye and their red flanks.
|There were 6 there this morning|
We've had a feeder stuck to the kitchen window for a few years. The sparrows and blue tits are quite happy to use it, even when you're stood next to it in the kitchen. For the first time though the long-tailed tits have started to use it, which gives you such a unique view of their cute little faces.
|Peeping in the kitchen window at me as I took a picture of it|
So it may be winter, but there are still plenty of wonders out there.