21 October 2007

One or two surprises…

Today, I’m having a lazy Sunday - it’s not what I planned on doing, it’s just the way things have worked out. I had one or two things in mind for today but when I looked out of the window at around 7:30AM and saw a rather gloomy, misty morning I decided to stay in bed - my walk or bike ride will have to keep for another day! Now, the weather outside is gorgeous, so I could have gone out after all.

So, what’s been going on? Well, not a huge amount really. I’ve been making the most of the dry weather and have biked to work three times, I went swimming on Tuesday after work and then did a full workout at the gym followed by a swim on Thursday.

Work has been quiet, very quiet in fact. They did manage to throw in a little surprise on Thursday though. I left my desk for just long enough to eat a rather tasty bowl of chicken salad, that Lynda delivered to work for me, and came back to find that the General Manager had called a staff meeting to announce that a new Service Manager was to start this coming Monday! I didn’t see that one coming! It would have been nice to have been in the meeting, but I’ve seen too many of these changes over the years to worry. They come… they go.

Work threw in another little surprise yesterday but this time a rather nice one. I say nice, it was for me but not so for the poor Woodcock that flew into the showroom window. The poor thing was not happy. One of the salesmen came to me just after 9:00AM to say that “a big bird with a long bill just hit the window!” When I asked what it was, he had no idea but said that it was still lying on the floor outside.

I was off over the top of the reception desk like a shot! Sure enough, there lay the rather sorry looking bird, a Woodcock. Quite what it was doing in such a built up area in broad daylight I don’t know but I bet it wished that it had stayed well clear of our window. When I first picked the bird up, I was sure that it was dead - there was no life in it at all and its eyes were glazed over - but after a short while, it started to come around.

The rather dazed Woodcock.

I moved the bird to a quiet, sunny part of the car park, well away from any traffic or people and after around half an hour the Woodcock was able to stand on its own again and was starting to look a lot healthier. By mid-morning it had moved into cover under a large bush and by the time I left work at lunchtime it had gone on its way again.

The Woocock finds cover.

Yesterday afternoon I went out for a few hours birding at Willington Gravel Pits. I wasn’t expecting to see too much but the weather was just too good to sit at home in front of the TV. During almost 5 hours there I saw a total of 48 species. Highlights were 2 Whooper Swan, 8 Wigeon, 10 Gadwall, 2 Water Rail, 4 Common Snipe, around 550 Black-head Gull, 110 Lesser Black-backed Gull, a single Grey Wagtail, a female Stonechat, around 30 Fieldfare, 2 Redwing and 2 Goldcrest. The 160 or so Canada Geese that flew in at dusk made for a rather nice sight too.

Part of the mid-afternoon gull roost.

Lesser Black-backed Gulls and the much smaller Black-headed Gulls.

One of the two Whooper Swans.

The sunset was also worth waiting for, even if the temperature had dropped to around 5°c by then! The sun goes down behind one of the main areas of water and it gave me a chance to play around with the camera at the end of a very enjoyable afternoon’s birding.

Sunset over Willington Gravel Pits.

Now, I’m going to go and have a large mug of coffee, watch the TV and read the Sunday papers - a lazy day!

1 comment:

  1. That woodcock reminds me of a bird that flew into the side of the barn where I was employed. He was headed for the hay loft door opening and missed **THUMP** and hit the ground. We called the arbouretum and they took it in until it got better. The swans remind me of a chinese print we have. Beautiful sunset. Very serene.