I was waiting at the bus stop after visiting my father this morning and a red kite sailed over my head. I have seen one or two patrolling the tiny village in the past but this was the closest it had got – unfortunately it looks very small in a hurried smartphone photograph.
They must be in the top ten of the most majestic sights to be seen in the English countryside – the phrase poetry in motion being completely accurate in this case.
I walked to and from town last week and on the return journey I was very surprised to see a Goldcrest in the bushes by the side of the road. It was probably a female as males have a more orange crest. This is the UK’s smallest bird and although not actually rare, in fact the native population is boosted in the winter months by birds from the continent, it is more often found in coniferous woodland than beside the busiest road in town. She was busy searching for small spiders and insects among the bare branches. This sighting really made my day and I wish I had managed to take better photos with my phone.