I’m getting the best of both worlds at the moment, splitting my time between two homes, one in the city and one in the country.
From the Distant Drumlin it’s only a short drive to the coast. On Monday I walked along the North Down Coastal Path, on the shore of Belfast Lough. The sun was out; the tide was out; the birds were out; and we humans had come out to enjoy the first day of spring-like weather.
The Irish coast is a winter home for many birds, and I spotted an Oystercatcher, a Turnstone and a Common Redshank. I didn’t get very close to the birds, but these wider photos do show you how calm and peaceful the Irish coast can be, even after a stormy, wet winter.
But the coolest bird around the Distant Drumlin is this one – the sparrowhawk. I snapped him in 2011, just before I went to India, and didn’t have a chance to show him off before today. The website for Birdwatch Ireland explains the reason for the sparrowhawk perching on this particular fence. It’s the thing that you can’t see, just beyond the edge of the photo – a birdfeeder, attracting blue tits, goldfinches, chaffinches and robins. Little wonder that a bird of prey was hanging around.