It soon became very clear that the crows were feeling extra feisty this morning, as they were making a terrible racket high up in the tops of the trees. I then realized that they were actually shouting every time a red kite flew overhead. There are a lot of red kites around here, so the crows were doing a lot of shouting! At one point I saw a crow chasing and buzzing a red kite, as several of his friends screamed and shouted, egging him on.
|Crow on the left, chasing after the red kite|
Red kites don't like crows and rooks around their nest sites and will chase them away if they're too close. My parents had several pairs of rooks that nested in their garden for years, but when the red kites decided to nest in their garden, the rooks were evicted and their nests dismantled by the red kites.
Perhaps the crows can feel spring in the air and are trying to stake their claim on the nest sites, before the red kites start nesting. Perhaps they were just having a noisy day!
I found a few signs of wild flowers starting to grow. The Lords and Ladies that we spotted a couple of weeks ago have grown a bit more and started to uncurl. The Bluebells that carpet the floor of the woods in the spring have started to grow leaves. There also seemed to be a lot of Herb Robert and Celandine showing signs of growth.
|Lords and Ladies (Wild Arum)|
|The Bluebells are starting to grow|
At first glance the woods seemed quite bare and wintery, but on closer inspection there was green starting to appear everywhere. With the sun shining and the plants starting to grow, it feels like spring is on the way. Perhaps we'll get the snow they've been talking about and that will be the end of that though!
|Chaffinches camouflaged in the leaves|
The Great Tits and Blue Tits seemed to be having a lovely time, twittering away, in the trees above me. Looking up at this time of year, it looks like they're climbing around a giant climbing frame and thoroughly enjoy every minute of it.
As well as the signs of spring, there were a few left overs from autumn. The Velvet Shank we'd found on a previous visit was doing well, but it doesn't mind the cold or frost. I even found a brave little Butter Cap and a Common Bonnet that had survived.