Saturday, March 28, 2009

Crows being bothersome as usual

Landscape pic for you, above taken early winter, (and some charring still evident from May. Here's where the north valley watercourse emerges out onto gazelle field and good place for gazelle grazing generally. Below taken today.. view rotated more towards the west but that's the same tree in the centre. You can see the change wrought by the rainy season! The dark patch (not the shadow, but by the wood) in the lower left quadrant was the scene of the mysterious fire a few weeks ago..

Tiny plant found up on west slopes of windsurfer hill a week or so ago.

(We don't take pics on Shabbat so I decided to share these that were in stock that I'm pretty sure you have not seen yet, since there was anyway a report to give and the myst pic)

Pleasant walk to gazelle field, circling north and east around the new pine grove to the north valley dirt road and back round to central trail. It was great to see how all of gazelle field had recovered from the charring and was abundantly green and colourful. Yellow mustard is there and also plentiful on the bank by valley road, still plenty anemone on all flat ground, buttercup, mini irises, pink butterfly orchid, chamomile, catchfly, pheasants eye and those tiny orange dandelions still going strong.

No gazelles noticed today but plenty bird activity. European cuckoo calling this morning down in east valley and again just after sunset, again from the direction of east valley ruins. Great spotted cuckoo (?) call roughly from orchard area, greenfinch variety of calls in pines by the rubble and in the new pines. Great tit calls and collared doves about. 'tack' calls in pines near valley road suggesed Sylvid warblers foraging in there, more Orpheans? ( Husband saw a chukar partridge at the end of nearby road, pretty much lowest part of our neighbourhood) also described another call he heard down there this morning, monotonous oop oop oop which matches the hoopoe, a bird that often calls on days of rain. (One has to be quite careful to sort out all the possible 'oo' type calls and how they vary in pitch or don't, so that cuckoos, collared doves, laughing doves and hoopoes don't get confused with each other. All were seen and or heard and active today, though the collareds were quiet.) Two hooded crows harrying a big brown Buteo like bird near the owl glade. Plenty hooded crows around in general, spread out flock heading back to roost towards dusk.

Several pair of laughing doves on our street as well as house sparrows and blackbirds putting up an angry ruckus at each other toward sunset. They have also been singing on and off through the day.

Weather for today, sat 28 March: Range 6.5-11 degrees C.
Time of our walk: ~ 6 p.m. (summertime, we have just moved our clocks forward and sunset is now shortly after 7 p.m. ) humidity approaching 80%, winds westerly and wsw 12-16 knots. Cumulus blowing in all day, rain on and off.

Today's mystery pic. Again, take a step back, and good luck!:) Yes, it's a natural texture, not man made, but I won't always let you know that:)

previous pic solution. Some of you were close on thursday's.. 'frog's eggs' and 'wet crocodile' on the way, but it was in fact part of the back of a wet green toad. Some of you may wish to scroll back to see the amplexus pic for a better view

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