Although it’s been colder in the last week, that’s only been because the fog from the Severn Estuary has been rising and drifting up over the South Wales Valleys. But the weather forecasters, who said the warm weather was over, got it wrong.
So off I went up onto Mynydd y Grug to enjoy the sunshine. And it was glorious.
Flocks of fieldfares (left) and redwings (below) – mainly winter visitors from Northern Europe – were tucking into the bumper crop of berries the ubiquitous hawthorns are bearing this year. Quite a few blackbirds were gorging themselves too. They’re probably natives nesting in the vicinity and don’t need to hang out in the flock of visitors.
While the dry spell, with hardly any wind, is set to continue in the week ahead, it now promises to be very sunny with the fog being held at bay. And today was the start of it.
Back on Mynydd y Grug, there were a few wheatears around though not as many as I saw last winter. The goldfinches are flocking together further east along the ridge between the Rhymney and Sirhowy Valleys. They seem to favour a stand of beach trees surrounded by sheep pastures.
A couple of ravens tumbled in the sky and three buzzards had found a thermal above the south-facing slope of the valley. I didn’t see any red kites today but they’ve been around increasingly frequently.
It’s not what you normally associate with these birds eating but think of it as birds’ convenience food – a tube of protein or the avian equivalent of a pot noodle.