Friday, 2 October 2009

A wander round

I had a walk from the house, along Kingsdown Road and then took the footpath just before Old Stairs Hill, over to Bockhill Farm, passing the edge of the Golf Course. The highest point here give a fine a round view. I took a few photos of some of the things that most appealed to me.

At the moment there are an enormous number of Crane Flies (Daddy Long-legs) around. This always gives rise to the most amazingly stupid and hysterical comments in the papers and on the TV and radio about the terrible menace they are. They do of course represent a good source of food for some of the birds that are now forming small feeding flocks. I noticed a good mixed group of Long-tailed, Blue and Great Tits, with a few Chiffchaffs moving along the hedge next to the Golf Course.

There's a lot of food available at the moment. Anyone who has rung (banded) Blackbirds at this time of year will quickly find out that Blackberries form a major part of their diet.

There are good numbers of Sloes around as well, these have other uses, although I'm not really a Gin drinker, a drop of sloe Gin a Christmas makes an interesting tipple.

Looking east the cliffs at Cape Gris Nez were clear today and the French Monument can just be seen.

Turning left the view across to Ramsgate Harbour was a bit hazy, but the white cliffs at Pegwell stand out.

I always enjoy the panorama from here, the Ripple Windmill prominent in the comparative foreground, with Manston Airport behind.
From up here it is easy to see how the hedges from the cliff top lead down to the small farm wood. The hedgerows are important as the road ways for both bird and small mammals, and far too many have been removed from the farm here.

While I was scanning the area one of the avian success stories of the last two decades, a Green Woodpecker, yaffled loudly and landed on a tree not far away.

Isolated in one of the fields here is another of the remnants of the war years. I'm not totally sure what it was, I presume it held a gun, it certainly has a good view across the Channel. Big Bruce, an earlier feature, is about 200 metres down the hill.

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