Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Still A'Freezin'

It was cold this morning.

Not just chilly, but cold enough for a decent ice crust on the car, and plenty cold enough to crisp up the hedgerows.

The skies were immaculate - due in part perhaps because there are no vapour trails from grounded aeroplanes?

For those keen to have a try at Sloe Gin this Autumn, now's the time to mark down the decent blackthorn bushes. All the blackthorns are in bloom now as you'll see from the photos, and it pays to make a little map of the densest concentrations on your patch - so you can then nip back after first frost and pick all you need in one easy session.

By the way, I've only just decanted the remainder of my gin from last year (that is, removed all the remaining sloes and sludge from the demijohn and decanted into bottles). If you start to get a good production line going, you'll have some of last year's SG to drink when winter comes and can stock up again ready for next year. If you see what I mean...

Although it's nice to feel the sun on my back again, I can't help missing winter just a tad. Let's face it, for many of us, it's when we do most of our shooting, beating etc. I've been out to bag a few woodies in the last couple of weeks, but the little blighters seem to nest earlier and earlier every year, and I just can't help feeling uncomfortable about shooting potentially nesting birds...

Monday, 12 April 2010

I've come out of hibernation!

Can't really make any excuses; it's just been cold, wet and miserable for so long, I couldn't bring myself to the keyboard to extol the virtues of another English winter.

But lo and behold! The sun comes out and all is right with the world once more. I've got a stack of good photos to share thanks to some nifty camerawork on some driven shoots over the winter - not to mention a tale or two to tell of snowy duck flights, bagging a Jay, hill stalking and much much more.

I will be sharing in good time - in the meantime, has anyone else noticed a large amount of ladybirds around this year? Perhaps we're in for another plague...