Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Finishing off my Stourhead bird survey.

This is the final installment of my bird survey around the area of Stourhead.
I'm walking south down the lane towards New Lake. Just before turning off towards the dam end, there is an old fashioned telephone box and post box. Many years ago, British Telecom modernised it's telephone box into a dull and boring monstrosity (there's progress for you), but if desired a village or parish could ask to be able to keep it's original phone box and this is obviously what happened here. This mailbox shows the letters E R which stand for Elizabeth's Reign. There are still old post boxes around the country that have V R for Victoria's Reign and G R for George's Reign. Cool eh? At the crossroads across the road from the telephone and post box this thatched cottage took my eye. It's a lovely cottage if in need of some tender loving care! (click on the photo to better see the state of the thatched roof!). So on down to the dam at the southern end of the New Lake. The sign on this bridge proves that we can SOMETIMES have freakish weather in this country! (-: From this vantage point I had a beautiful view out over the lake. Here I noted several Grey Heron roosting in the trees at the far end. I also had Mallards and one gorgeous male Mandarin Duck. The only other bird on the lake was a Great crested Grebe. I kind of expected to see more on this lake.....maybe on my next visit. I took this photo because I loved the completely clear reflection. It was only when I looked at it on the computer that I realised how much of an optical illusion was created. You could easily think I had the camera pointed up into the sky when in fact I had it pointed down at the lake. I have to confess to not being able to get anywhere near any of the birds I was surveying for photography, but here are a couple of heavily cropped photos of a Robin and Buzzard to end my posting on this lovely area of countryside.


Anonymous said...

Great finale Jen,
You even got an image of a Buzzard, I am still looking for one. That said, they are quite common in that area down there. You can usually see one between Wincanton and Sparkford. Looking forward to your next trip report.

Eve said...

Thanks for taking us along Jenny! That cottage is sweet. It looks like it is occupied, that roof is really amazing. The bright red boxed were very interesting too. Loved the trip!!

Mary said...

These are lovely and so very "English". I like the red phone boxes...and the old mailboxes are really cool! Wow..they go back a long way. I've never really understood about thatched roofs....how come they aren't full of bugs and mice and such?? I love how they look. A very interesting post!

Jenny said...

Hi Roy, yes Buzzards are more common than Kestrels here. I think they're getting more and more over your way too. The atlas should show this up nicely when it's finished in 2011.

Hi Evie, yes, I'm sure that cottage is lived in. I wonder if it is a 'tied cottage' to the Stourhead estate and they haven't kept it up very well.

Hi Mary, I expect they are full of all sorts of wildlife (you'd love it)(-: Hmmmm not sure about the spiders though. I wouldn't want to live in a thatched cottage by choice. It's pretty expensive to get re-done.

Shellmo said...

So many beautiful things to see in your area! That thatched roof cottage had so much character - made me want to go fix it up! Thoroughly enjoyed your photos!

Mary said...

Thanks for guessing on my warbler and sparrow...I put up a couple of additional shots that I thought might help.