Thursday, 10 February 2011

Woodland nature diary

Having counted twenty three blue tits in an hour in our garden (and two sparrows) for the national RSPB bird count, I am feeding them with fast-vanishing fat balls and seeds. I can now enjoy their delightful morning singing and ongoing sweet warbling, without guilt. Shakespeare suggests bird song is the product of woodland "musicians".

The garden is mostly still dead or barren. This is the condition of nature in winter, above ground. But this morning, I noted that the old thorn bush whose artistically, serpentine, gnarled trunk is a feature of our view from the house, is producing tiny leaves of light green, suddenly, which must herald the start of spring. The lightness and freshness of the tiny leaves are surprising from a wild and savage thorn. It also has a "refined" side.

It is start of the end of the barren period of the year. There are no daffodils or crocuses as yet, but tulips are starting to bud and flower elsewhere. We still have English rain with very mild weather, but we are heading back on our long journey towards warming "Sol" and fresh "Primavera" - - and the old thorn senses it.

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