Monday, September 24, 2007

Nature Notes - At Last

I fear I have been neglecting my duties as the W.H. Hudson of Thought Experiments - but I haven't seen much of the outside world lately, what with one thing and another (and no I haven't been incarcerated). This is a pity, as it's always been my favourite time of year (at least when the sun's out) - it feels to me like the real turning of the year, the sadness of passing mingled with the tang of promise and new beginnings. (Nearly all the most important things in my life, such as it is, have happened at this time of year - including even the legendary First Meeting of Nige and Bryan, an encounter which lives in song and story, if not in my addled memory - but it was definitely this time of year.)
Anyway, though beautiful, this is a quiet time of year, when the birds (apart from the unstoppable robin) are making very little effort to serenade us. And it may, ominously, be quieter than usual, as this peculiarly unpleasant virus makes inroads. Why can't it target those big bastard scavengers I'm always going on about, instead of the songbirds? Nature, of course - helped on, ironically, by us bird lovers with our feeders and birdbaths. The Silent Spring, if it comes, might turn out to be the work not of evil chemicals companies but blameless friends of the feathered tribe. Yes, ironic.
However, here's a good news story from the world of birds - let's hear if for Miranda! I love the thought of the bells of Christchurch Cathedral ringing a godwit welcome.

10 comments:

  1. Ah yes. I remember you were wearing an RAF greatcoat. I wasn;t.

    ReplyDelete
  2. That's it - the RAF greatcoat - just back from bombing seven bells out of Fritz, wasn't I? Pipe clenched between my teeth, my little dog Nigger running along at my feet... Or am I getting confused? Nurse!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ah. God bless scientists, god bless The Daily Mail, god bless Trill, and god bless all the little old biddies of England.

    (sorry, I sounded like Rabbi Blue just then)

    I love Autumn too. It's a good time to get out of town.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Did you ever catch the cad, Nige, who ran your poor dog over at the barracks' gates?

    ReplyDelete
  5. Oh Nige, wonderfully rhapsodic piece; Vaughan Williams would have put it to music and called it 'The Nige Ascending'. I was still misting over when I got to that dreadful virus. But then the words 'big bastard scavengers' jolted me out of my sense of other-worldliness. I wasn't sure whether you were talking about vultures, blowflies or raccoons. But then I remembered Hedge Funders; 'big bastard scavengers', so apt. Mind you, there's a definite link to vultures, blow flies and raccoons.

    I wonder if 'The Nige Ascending' would be played by Nige Kennedy, accompanied by the LSO and Dawn Chorus (such a lovely girl)?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Chip, I got the swine sent down under the Race Relations Act. I mean, it's just not on, is it?
    And Johntyh, there might be worse to come - I'm planning a little walking come October...

    ReplyDelete
  7. Round here it's the sparrowhawks, jays, carrion crows, magpies, and goshawks preying on the songbirds that will make springs silent as long as the sentimental idiots running the RSPB stop us from controlling them.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Too right Philip - it's all of those, bar the goshawk, in my neck of suburbia too, and the RSPB won't hear word about them. It's all down to cats, they say, or squirrels, or habitat loss - nonsense! And the RSPB prevent the building of airports in any sensible place too - they have friends in very high places, and far too much money.

    ReplyDelete
  9. By the way, the godwit did great, but the bar-tailed fuckwit is yet to arrive.

    ReplyDelete
  10. We haven't got many cats round here - it's too far out in the country and you can shoot them without spending six months in prison (unlike protected birds) but our blue and great and long-tailed tits have been all but wiped out by about twenty sparrowhawks operating in the village which think bird-tables exist to provide them with easy meals.

    ReplyDelete