Saturday, February 9, 2008

Wild Red Anemones, The Calanit

From the house heard house sparrows, soft laughing dove coo, jackdaws and a blackbird in song.

~4.30 p.m.
Just turning down toward valley road noticed a falcon (probably kestrel) wheel round land in the top of a tall palm in a corner garden, startling some feral pigeons.. saw its talons lowered, quite dramatic, but it left the crown of the palm directly away from me so we didn't see it go.

I had forgotten how soon red anemones (Anemone coronaria) ('Calanit') appear here so I was delighted to find quite a number of them blooming just off valley road amongst the asphodel, the latter putting out more blooms per spike now. The 'calanit' is a very popular flower here and protected, with beautiful brilliant soft scarlet petals, always good to see these fine flowers.
(They are often confused with poppies though those have only four petals each and come out much later in the season. )
Yellow wild mustard flowers (Synapis arvensis) already high and blooming and the leaves of a variegated thistle are already quite large and lush though the flower stems won't rise till later in the season.

Husband pointed out a sparrowhawk winging its way from north to south over east valley. Valley road itself was busy with late afternoon activity. Great tits, white spectacled bulbuls and graceful warblers calling, a regular blackbird in his acacia, hooded crows patrolling, and plenty rock hyrax activity. One fine adult on the road side let me get to about ten feet distance , we just eyeballed for a minute or so before it scampered off to the boulders (honestly I was thinking how cute it was and how I'd like to find out how soft its fur is, take it home and make it a pet, just a fantasy as they are too wild and it'd probably sooner take off my finger!) .

No comments: