Disturbing a quiet meal

I was photographing a robin at the feeder, thinking the lighting was just right for a cute photo that might go on this blog, when suddenly there was a rapid flurry and a nuthatch appeared instead. But it was only on looking at the photos afterwards that I saw the aggressive raid involved…

You don’t mess with a nuthatch…

The 4wd cluster Christmas meal: Wendy, Helena, Hilary & Chris, John, David, Pearl & Rod in front.

I’ve just come back to Durham from four weeks in Cheltenham. It’s always great to go back there and re-connect with friends. One of the highlights was the Christmas meal with the 4wd homegroup at Chris & Hilary’s – honestly, Hilary’s cooking is sensationally good; I thought the Thai red curry couldn’t be beaten until we came onto the cheesecake…

Redwings munching catoneaster berries

The severe snow brought some unusual birds to the garden, including a small flock of redwings. After initially guzzling some catoneaster berries, they lurked for several days but, bizarrely, ignored all the food I put out for them.

I restricted myself to one twitch – down to the Cotswold Water Park, in the fanciful hope of seeing some smew. I struck lucky – largely because I bumped into some birders coming the other way, who willingly shared what they’d seen. I therefore changed my planned journey and hot-footed it down to pit 39. There, along with a group of my favourite goosanders, was a small number of smew, including the spectacular black-and-white adult males. The photo below really is too small – so click for a bigger image.

Smew at Cotswold Water Park – click to enlarge

Finally I have to share a photo from early December before I left for the holidays. Sometimes you get lucky with lighting and placement…

Sunset at Greatham Creek

And just to prove that some birds on the feeder can still act cute…

Not all birds are so aggressive with each other…

2 thoughts on “Disturbing a quiet meal

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