The Clerk in the Country

Friday 9th April 2021

Nature in harmony?

As spring advances, tempers are flaring among my smaller neighbours.  From the kitchen window this morning I caught sight of two male blackbirds, in the air and apparently trying to land a punch on each other.  A couple of goldfinches disputed their place in the queue for the bird feeder, its two perches already occupied by others from their group.  Up they spiralled, glittering like jewel boxes in the sunshine.  Overhead a flock of swans made their way northwards, but their formation was unusually ragged and veered slowly from side to side.  Were they lost, looking for a lunch stop, or in dispute with their leader?  Meanwhile, on the infrequent occasions when the car emerges from the garage, the wagtail races in to resume its attack on the wing mirror.  Clearly it isn’t among the creatures able to recognize their own reflection (recent research has added horses to this list) but it does, it seems, have a long memory.