Hanneke’s ramble over the rainbow

Whilst walking along the river Wharfe from Hebden to Burnsall and back and then Hebden to Grassington and back during May, I watched Spring unfold. All the different greens from the bushes, grass and trees. The Spring flowers gradually opening up, I wondered why I did not see any red flowers. I know there will be red ones, such as a poppy, but maybe the red flowers need a different location, and, or soil. Maybe one of our members has the answer.

The White flowers I spotted are: Wood anemones, few flowered leek, scurvy grass, garlic flowers, strawberries, garlic and mustard, cow parsley, stitchwort, white clover and cuckoo pint.

The Blue flowers are: Blue bells, forget me not, vetch and sweet violets.

The Yellow flowers I found: Celandine, primrose, marsh marigold, cowslip, dandelion, crosswort and buttercup.

The Pink flowers are: Cranesbill, Red campion which is pink, cuckoo flower, and butterbur and water aven.

I also observed that there are definitely fewer birds in the river, I only saw 3 lots of ducks with ducklings, 10 or twelve, but the last one was Mother duck just with one duckling, then a surprise this morning, a  Mother duck had 10 little ducklings following her, but it was the only duck I saw (29 May 2021).

Other birds I have seen over the last few month, whilst walking along the river are:

  • Goosanders, dippers, mandarin ducks, a kingfisher with their iridescent feathers, what a delight, herons, a sandpiper, wagtails, pied, yellow and grey, different gulls, oystercatchers, sand martins and swallows, flying low over the water.

Furthermore, noisy wrens, different tits, chaffinch, goldfinches showing off their pretty colours, robins with their red breasts, sparrows, blackbirds singing their hearts out, the green woodpecker, thrushes, lapwings flying here and there up and down, curlews with their melodious song, pheasants, an odd starling, crows and pigeons. This is the first year that a starling has not made its nest in our lime tree. Last year I saw lots of starlings, but not this year.

I only once saw two buzzards, and a kite on an other day, 2 partridges rushing away.

A big surprise this morning, a hare just in front of me on the road walking back to Hebden, unfortunately I did not get a photo, but it made me very happy.

The trees are in full leaf and with the sun out, the world looks magnificent.

Most mornings I see rabbits, but fewer than last year. I wonder if the wet and frosty weather in April and early May has made everything later, hence so few birds on the river.

Walking early in the morning, my boots get wet from the dew, but the sun makes beautiful patterns, reflections in the water, with the steam rising and clouds circling round above me.

I feel so lucky to have all this beauty on my doorstep.  I often am accompanied by bird song and the sound of the water rushing over the rocks in the river, my mind free of any worries and I arrive back home full of the wonders of nature and totally refreshed. We are so lucky to live in this beautiful landscape, all this wonder on our doorstep.

Hanneke Dye 29 May 2021