Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Hooray! The First Swallow.

I've been anticipating their arrival for a while now but this evening, as I relaxed in my living willow chair with a cold beer and the two dogs, admiring another glorious sunset, I heard the familiar call of a swallow overhead.

I swear they call either to say hello for another year or with joy at  the completion of their journey. There was just one swallow, but more will arrive over the next couple of weeks until we reach five or six pairs.
This moment I look forward to every year, for it really is a great time of year symbolised by the return of these joyful birds from their amazing migration.

It cheered me up greatly, for it had started badly with me having to put one of the guinea fowl out of its misery. It had a damaged leg and wing and was getting more and more sickly. We just have three left now and with no breeding success for a few years it is looking like these comical characters won't be gracing the farm for too much longer.

There was mixed news though this morning, for one of the Muscovy girls was flopping around last night, seemingly unable to walk. I put her to bed but was expecting the worst this morning. Instead, out she came right as rain.

The incident did make me consider whether two Muscovy females is enough though, so today I collected a third, a chocolate brown girl. She really is very pretty (for a Muscovy duck).

Sue and I worked outside all day today. Sue spent much of the day on the mower while I concentrated on taking the tops off a few willows which were in danger of becoming too big to handle. It was a gorgeous spring day. The Shetland ewes are back outside for the moment - it was getting stuffy in the stables and they were not showing any signs of going into labour. They appreciated the willow cuttings which I threw them.

Over in the veg patch, the Morello cherry is out in blossom and the honeybees are doing a great job of turning those beautifully delicate flowers into nascent sour cherries.

Today spring was most definitely in the air.

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