April 2001(February and March)

It's official, we have just completed the most wet, windy and miserable (local pictures) six months spell of weather since records began almost two hundred and fifty years ago. What is more we are now entering the seventh month.

Forecasters predict a brilliant summer ahead but purely on the statistical basis that we haven't had one for some time. A word of caution, weather lore says ' rain on Good Friday and Easter Day, a good year for grass and a bad year for hay!'

Chiffchaff are widespread now, one or two Blackcap are present and the first Swallow has arrived. Presumably he is one of the ninety or so seen gathering on the overhead wires early last September before journeying to South Africa where he will have spent the winter months. I say 'he' because the males usually return the first in order to have the pick of the best nest sites.

During the next five or six weeks, Britain will see the arrival of a flood of migrant birds from the Mediterranean, Africa and even the Southern Oceans. Millions upon millions of many species are migrating northwards, some covering great distances over inhospitable terrain, driven on by the overwhelming desire to breed. This is one of the wonders of the natural world.

Keep looking out for them and record any please let me know of unusual sightings. 

HIRUNDINE 6th April 

Wildlife Slide Show 18th April Copsale Village Hall

Some useful links:

RSPB Mooney Goes Wild on One USGS