All grown up… Watching our resident swans over the summer 

August is just hours away from drawing to a close, and just been for my usual lunch-time wander around our loch, keeping an eye out as always for the bird families I’ve come to know over this lovely long summer – ducks, coots and swans, all generally to be found gliding across the water or sunbathing on bankings in their usual groups.

Today found the swan family I’ve been keeping an eye on since their nest was being settled into back in May, and was amazed to see how very grown up they look all of a sudden; smooth white patches shining through their grey cygnet fluff. Thought I’d take a moment just to document their journey, amazing to watch, as the summer has rolled on.

… 24th May 2016, the cygnets two days old, the first glimpse I caught of them on the other side of the loch with their mum, making their first tentative forays into swimming…

 

 

26th – 27th May – both days spending time in the nest, either huddled together or under a wing… ❤


3rd June 2016, getting braver in their swims and ducking heads under the water, loved to watch their little feet start kicking…

 

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21st July 2016, approx 2 months old and grown so much but still as fluffy as their first days..

 

… and finally today, 29th August, just over 3 months old and beginning to look not unlike their parents, grey fluff giving way to long white necks just in time for the turn of the month and the new season. Have really enjoyed watching their developments over the last couple of months, and look forward to seeing them taking to the loch with their new white feathers now as it begins to be framed by oranges and reds once more and life moves ever onwards.

Blossom, ducklings and getting back to summer routines – Hello May! 

It’s hard to believe we are already over half-way through May already and hurtling towards half-way through 2016 – but with the weather finally holding, heat in the air from first thing and the skies blue more days than not, summer is pretty much here; and has brought with it all its usual beauty and new life.
Every year I look forward to this time, when the cherry blossoms outside our house come into their own and the street is filled with tumbling pale pink confetti every time the wind rustles by.

Inside, the pets are doing fine – little Rose having been with us two years next week, 26 months old and looking bright and well, and the boys their usual selves, still surprisingly timid souls around new sights and sounds – taking a while to warm up to the idea of the back door slung open once more at weekends and the buzz of the outdoors drifting in – but very settled in their home and enjoying tumbling plays around the living room at nights.


At the farm, the midges are swarming already in a thickening band between the sea and the hill, and as Charmer suffers from sweet itch which makes this all the worse, on my evening visits am always armed with citronella spray, mesh fly rugs and opting for shady hours in the barn when the day is muggiest – although a bit itchy he is undeterred in general and absolutely loving the new grass that has come through and the adventures we’ve had the time and daylight to go on!

I’m very lucky too to work in beauitful surroundings and to have a loch to walk around on lunch breaks – this week has been a wonderful one for that, watching the ducks, coots and swans on the water and the oyster catchers nearby – all are currently on nests with new life just around the corner, except two families of ducks whose new arrivals are with us already and impossibly fluffy and entertaining to watch find their way in life.


Looking forward to watching them grow, seeing the rest of the babies hatch, and to more of these warm temperatures and lots of time to enjoy the outdoors, nature, and our gaggle of animals.
Hope everyone is having a good week. ❤