© 2014 by Barbara Copperthwaite.

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Social climbing

I have just seen a very funny sight: two crows having a row about who will sit on a branch that was impossible for either of them to land on…. Initially, I spotted a Crow trying to sit on the very topmost branch of a tall, thin poplar tree. But every time it tried to land the twig bent and the bird slid off. It wouldn’t give up though, kept on trying to land despite the twig being far too thin to take its weight. Well, that seemed daft enough – then another crow came in and tried. Why were they both so intent on sitting there? The newcomer also fell off, and the pair proceeded to have a bit of argy bargey, swapping over in their attempts, and sometimes desperately trying slightly lower branc

Times are changing…

Even in the depths of winter when everything seems dead, there are signs of life. There are lots of Squirrels around at the moment. I don’t know if hunger is making them raid their stores a bit more frequently, but there seem to be loads sitting on the floor munching away, or rootling around on the ground. It’s a great time to get pictures of them…but because it was raining when I went out today, I didn’t bring my camera…so a great photo opportunity, if you’ve got your camera with you! As well as eating, they are also busy chasing one another, not because they are after each other’s food – no, it is males chasing females because already they are thinking of mating. In fact, everywhere I look

Four seasons in one day

When I set off the sky was black, the wind blowing, and it was raining. Every now and again a lone snowflake floated down past my nose, hinting at worse weather to come. Then suddenly the sun broke through, shone on the Armageddon clouds and seemed to chase them away in a matter of moments. I was walking in bright sunshine! As if to celebrate with me the change in the weather, the Kingfisher was waiting for me. I watched it get three silver fish, almost certainly Sticklebacks, though I couldn’t certain as I didn’t have a proper look at them. It had dived four times, but come up empty-handed (or beaked) the second time, proving that even the best of us are fallible. Generally when I’ve seen t

Let it snow

The light leaking round the edges of my bedroom curtains was different somehow, so I guessed what was waiting for me when I threw them open: yes, snow! I had seen it falling last night, but hadn’t thought it would settle as the ground was so wet. Full of enthusiasm, I grabbed my cameras, layered up with my winter woollies, and set off with Scamp for Highbury Park. Everywhere I looked was a beautiful picture of a frosted landscape sparkling in sunlight. The air was full of birdcall too, every species busy keeping their energy levels up to fight the cold. The best place to see birds in after a cold night is on trees in sunshine – don’t look for them in the shade, because they will be trying to

Hello!

The newsletter from Highbury Park Friends very kindly mentioned this site, and used a couple of my photographs. So I would like to welcome any new visitrs - and thank you for taking a peek. I hope you enjoy it!

Fishing with The King

The Kingfisher has two favourite perches beside Henbury Pond in Highbury Park, and now that I know both I automatically glance at them as I walk by, just in case. Today, luck was with me, because there it was, sitting patiently. I stood watching for an age – I get a little star-struck around Kingfishers, I have to admit. It was long enough for me to decide that I was watching a male, the tell-tale signs being that the underside of his beak was an orangey-red (the females is more black) and his legs and feet are red too. At one point he decided to move across from one beloved spot to the other, giving its high, clear pirrip call; a very clean, clear sound. Then, suddenly, in a flash of electr

Crystal mornings

Another proper hard frost this morning, a pretty deep one, where even at 10am everything was still white over and the ground as hard as iron underfoot. All the leaves are trimmed with frost, each delicate vein delineated, every soft curve sharpened. Blades of grass are outlined perfectly in stark white shards of crystal. It’s a lovely crenelated edge when you get close up to it; it is possible to see each little crystal, crunchy and beautiful. I bent down to take macro pictures of the blades of grass and the leaves…but Scamp loves a macro picture because I’m bending down to her level, and she likes to shove her nose in the lens and stand right where I’m trying to take a picture. This someti