Ive been blessed with some fascinating moments in the past couple of days, witnessing wild animals doing unexpected things. Yesterday as i was washing the pots and looking out over the garden i saw a family of blackbirds - parents with two youngsters - hunting for slugs and bugs. The mother bird found a really big slug, much too big to swallow so she held it in her beak and moved her head from side to side grinding the slug on the path so that they could eat the shreds which came off. Then one of the chicks came over, snatched the slug and swallowed the whole lot! I have no idea how it kept it down but it did! Then they flew inside the open compost bin for a mixed buffet. Later that day me and D were in the garden mowing the grass and pulling up weeds and a female blackbird came down to the ground beside us and stayed within one to two metres of us for about 10 minutes! She wasn't shy at all and ate worms and woodlice one after the other as if we weren't even there. It was such a beautiful moment which really touched my heart. D was very quiet and still and watched her with me just as transfixed as i was.
Today we took a walk down by the canal with my mum. We took some bread to feed the birds which we saw on our last visit. There were two swans with three signets who ate all the bread we had whilst hissing at us to keep us away from their young. We swiftly walked on when one parent in particular got a bit too hissy for comfort!
Further along we saw the tall slender heron in just the same spot that we saw it last time. Past a solo moor hen we found the geese- six parents and perhaps at least 20 goslings, some tiny and yellow like ducklings and some larger fluffy grey ones.
When we saw them they were resting on the opposite canal bank, but descended into the water when we arrived and all of them swam gracefully down the canal almost in single file! It was a wonderful sight, such harmony between them all, like one big extended family.
We left them on their way, walked past the bull field as the farmer and his dogs were gathering them and under the bridge before turning back on ourselves towards where we had just come from.
Then came a spectacular moment. The bull field now was empty, we ambled past chattering and enjoying the good weather despite today's predictions of torrential downpour's. Then we saw that the farmer was allowing the bulls back into the field, and once they had pushed through the gate they galloped like horses down towards us and the bank of the canal. The whole herd was in motion, galloping, frolicking, seemingly enjoying the freedom of the field again. It was amazing, they were so fast and lively. It felt like a scene from a film or documentary and i could almost hear the kind of soundtrack which would have perfected the display. Then they lined up side by side right on the edge of the canal, mooing loudly at us, snorting, swishing their tails - that's when we realised they wanted us out of there! They were not sharing their joy with us, it was sheer frustration. They galloped off circling the field, then returned again, lined up by the canal side, and if it wasn't for the canal I'm sure they would have charged right over to us and we would be in A&E right now.
Here's a little video i took of the cows, and this is the first time Ive edited a video and I'm so excited now about editing more! Its simple but i do love the simple things :-) Oh, for those of you who don't listen to music, please mute. But i love the music with it.
Quickly moving back towards the car we passed a solo swan, in the water, wings puffed out. Territorial, protective. On the path ahead was a goose, one wing badly broken, not able to fly away from us but unwilling to jump into the water with the angst ridden swan who was swimming along side watching him. Eventually he had no choice but to jump into the canal. The swan attacked him so ferociously, beak around neck, submerging him under the water, kicking with his powerful legs and thrashing his solid wings against the gooses much smaller body. For a few seconds he was hidden from view, drowning, then he managed to swim up and escape the swans grasp before the swans attack continued. Again the goose broke free looking very much weakened and he managed to hide in a too small for the swan gap between two barges. He was so still, we don't know if he survived or if that was his end. It was hard to watch but there was nothing we could do. We had to walk on and leave the rest in Gods hands.
These moments where animals do nothing but follow their instincts, their natural path, fascinate me and stay with me. They are so much greater than us, we stray from the straight path and pervert our natural order whilst they remain loyal to Gods design and will. They are always an inspiration to me.