This morning we went for our usual morning walk at dawn, along the banks of a river through a nearby park. On the mudflats, migrating egrets come and go with the seasons, as do many other Russian and Chinese visitors, such as greenshanks and sandpipers. The locals are always there, most obviously the herons, but also smaller birds, including the Baya Weaver family building on a scrubby bush on one of the low river islands. (Did you know it takes over 4,000 pieces of grass to weave a nest? All done by the male, and he has to do a darn good job, too, or his mate will take up with a more competent architect. After all, she has to entrust the lives of her family to his construction skills.)
From time to time there is also a flock of storks, up to thirty or so birds. I haven’t seen them for a couple of months, and this morning I received a hint of why. An adult dropped by with what appeared to be a newly fledged young in drab grey plumage.
This flock started as zoo escapees, but this youngster is decidedly feral. He doesn’t know he is one of the last of his kind in the wild, or that his immediate ancestors were saved by a zoo breeding programme, or that they were set free by a storm that brought a tree down across the netting of their cage. It will be interesting to see if this flock with its new additions can survive life in the wild. This youngster was born to fly free.
It seems our younger daughter, Tasha, is on the back of a bus.
Of course, she will get lots of ribbing from the family over that…
Well, it’s actually her picture that’s on the bus’s backside in Glasgow.
She’s the one at the, er, bottom, and although she is in a band, she’s not actually in this group – she was just modelling the cover and will probably hate me for blowing her, um, cover.