What could possibly be upsetting our scribe this fine March day? Oh, you had to ask.
The latest Waxwing news is that they're no longer there. How am I so sure? Well, for one, the tree they were sitting in has gone, mistletoe and all, to that great arboretum in the sky. During the last few weeks, contractors have been busy felling alternate trees along the main street through our estate. By chance, possibly the toss of a coin, the fate of Waxwing tree was sealed long before our colourful, crested visitors arrived. One tree either way and we would still have a wonderful clump of mistletoe to marvel, the only one in the area. Fan-flipping-tastic.
But you're right, dear long-suffering reader, it is a bright, clear March day. The sort of day that says "Stuff the housework, let's get out there and have some fresh air". Miraculously, I managed to persuade younger daughter to forego the comfort of her duvet and accompany me. So off we set for Little Linford Wood with high hopes of some early morning wildlife (early for Ruth, that is).
After trudging over the fields in a biting wind, we entered the shelter of the wood and followed the main ride northwards, passing an Ash tree on the edge of the path that is a good spot for Pine Ladybird during the warmer part of the year. Well, used to be a good spot, it's now three feet high and not nearly so impressive. There was a nice log pile beside it, which will be habitat for many an invertebrate, I'm sure, but any upwardly-mobile Pine Ladybird is going to be a bit disappointed come Spring.
Now, I do like a mad axeman as much as the next guy, but I'd prefer it if he was Michael Schenker or Eddie Van Halen, rather than some chainsaw-toting habitat mismanagement vandal. Sorry, I wasn't going to rant...
Continuing out of the wood, we circled west to cross the valley twice, finding Tree Sparrow and Skylark on the way. Then, heading back towards the wood, and perhaps more importantly into the wind, we had a huge slice of luck. With lashings of fortune custard.
In the fields, we happened upon several hares. They were more concerned with each other than us, so we were able to approach quite closely. Whilst we didn't witness any "boxing", there was sufficient activity to confirm that the wheel of the year is turning to favour the goddess Eastre and life is once more springing from the Earth. [Contented scribbly sigh]