Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Siberia Hysteria

As is often the case, Nairn missed a lot of the bad far !  However the biting East wind is something else, especially if walking into it, brrrrrr.

Had only a light covering this morning but all water frozen solid, had to break it up and fish it out to allow Disco and Limpy access.
Weather does not seem to be stopping Disco from laying, she has laid another 2 eggs, as far as she is concerned spring is on it's way !!

Fed the river birds 3 times today as they were ravenous and feeling that Siberian wind.

On a lighter note, here is the Man who said he would run towards the gunfire, even without a gun - Somehow I doubt it ! 😀😀

Monday, 26 February 2018

The Day Before Tomorrow

As yet we have not been hit by the Snow - forecast for later this week. It has been so long since we had a normal winter that the media are making a meal out of this late Siberian blast.
Meanwhile life goes on, Penny and Duke are making the most of the spring sunshine chilling out after their morning meal.

Likewise Disco and Limpy catching the rays. I have just had the roof of their Aviary covered, so any snow fall should be kept at bay.

Disco has already laid 2 eggs in the coop nest box where she successfully hatched 6 ducklings last year. I don't know if Limpy has been able to fertilise them as he is not yet fully mature. It's early days and Disco should lay about a dozen before she is finished - watch this space !

Friday, 23 February 2018

Siberian High....Sigh

The long awaited Siberian weather is starting to close in . In many ways I am quite happy, as it will delay the ducks that are keen to nest, probably saving some duckling lives. 

The weather is something that none of us can predict a month in advance, so many young inexperienced ducks get fooled by the longer days and brief mild spells. They stand more of a chance later in the season, when there is warmer days, shorter nights and insect life for the ducklings to eat.

Meanwhile it's just a case of killing time waiting for warmer March weather and keeping yourself in trim. Male Red Breasted Merganser starting to look his best for the up coming season.
Short movie clips below of handsome Duke having a Preen, and Limpy and Disco getting in the mood for mating, although Limpy is barely 8 months old and yet to chance his luck !

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Snow Melt

River high due to rise in temps and snow melt. One of our regulars was not deterred by the cloudy high water - The Dipper.

This is our only truly aquatic songbird, suitably adapted to walk under water in fast flowing rivers.

                      Incredibly robust and amazing to watch them walking underwater if conditions are right.

This one has it's favoured spots for feeding and perching.

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Almost Springlike

A couple of days sunny weather, lifts the spirits and almost feels like approaching spring.

Even the birds are getting that way inclined, including Disco and Limpy, digging around the soil in search of worms and roots.

Winter is by no means over, but another month should see us well on the way !

Disco and Limpy are in good health, and showing all the signs of a viable mating pair.

Friday, 16 February 2018

Bridge Open Again

Normality has returned to the Merryton bridge after resurfacing.

Beautiful day with blue sky, but this still shaping up to be the coldest winter for some years. 

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Greenpeace Valentine Blog

As a supporter and member of Greenpeace I received their Valentine Blog today, something I have been asked to share. HERE. Well worth a view.

Looks like the Merryton bridge should be re-opening soon if the progress noted today continues.

Was 15 years ago today that I gave up smoking, one of the best decisions I have ever made, pretty sure I would not be here now if I had continued.  Would recommend it to everyone who smokes !

Monday, 12 February 2018

Bridge Closed

Work has now started on the Merryton Bridge, both ends have been sealed for up to 2 weeks.

The birds that normally get fed beside it , have had their lives disrupted in the meantime.

Hopefully it wont be too long before the walkway has been renewed and back in use. Hundreds of people use this bridge on a daily basis. 

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Limpy and Disco

Having endured the winter together, my 2 disabled ducks Disco and Limpy are beginning to take a closer interest in each other.

Although Disco the female has not been too keen on Limpy because he has one deformed leg.

When he flew into the pond today showing that he can fly and she cant, this seemed to change her attitude quite a bit.

They circled around one another and she stretched her neck, as he did a few bobs of the head.

This was the outcome I was hoping for. It would be great if they can mate and have a brood together later in the spring - watch this space !

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Keeping Warm

                       Icy wind and frosty conditions means keeping warm is vital.

Birds metabolism is greater than other species and therefore need more food. Penny and Duke hunkered down after a good feed.

Monday, 5 February 2018

Residents Back

Penny and Duke returned a couple of days ago after a 3 day absence. It appears they were keeping another incomer away from the River.

Both are in fine fettle and awaiting the spring - like the rest of us ! 
Frosty day today and water ice cold, forecast same for the next week. 
According to the Gurn, Merryton bridge will be closed for up to 2 weeks from next Monday for bridge refurbishment, people will have to use the other bridges.

Friday, 2 February 2018

Away Day

No sign of Penny and Duke today, perhaps another attempt to dump Duke ? Spring tide this week  means particularly High and low tides, giving them access to seaweed normally out of reach. This may be the only reason Penny and Duke not in the river today. On the other hand they may have gone back to the place they spent 3 weeks away recently. They have not been challenged for the territory lately so maybe just gone for a change of scene.

Penny might still be trying to find a new mate and this might be her last chance before nesting time ! Is she trying to get back to Slim ?