28 March 2013

A Murmur of Spring

As we slowly trudge on through the coldest March since the early 60’s, with the collars of our thick coats turned up against the biting easterly winds - the promise of spring and summer still seems distant -  despite the passing of the spring equinox and changing the clocks this coming weekend.

The meadows appear much as they did in November, quiet and still against grey leaden skies.

But stand still, watch and listen for a while and all is ‘a-chatter’ with a murmur of spring.
Flocks of fieldfares run in fits and starts foraging in the grass, well camouflaged and hard to see until they are disturbed and noisily rise into a nearby tree. 

Photo by Darin Smith

Starlings too, busily feed, searching for grubs, with their sharp beaks - ‘aerating’ the meadow as they go. Their flocks almost seem to roll like waves as they work across the meadow – gently all rising and then settling again to feed in another area.  Like the fieldfares, when startled, they head to a hedgerow tree  and remain silhouetted in the branches whistling and chattering until it is safe to return. 

Photo by Darin Smith

All this 'conversation' in the trees, must I’m sure include at least a mention of the hope  that spring will soon arrive - after all when does a conversation in this country not include the weather!

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