This is the new camera. I’m calling it the beast because it is so much bigger than I thought it would be. And, beside it, its little sister, the compact. One unexpected spin off from getting the beast is that the manuals tell me so much about getting the best out of little sister, and as she is much more manoeuverable, she will be going with me most places.
There are things that the beast can do better, however. Yesterday we went on a walk along the road out of the village to take advantage of the mist and snow on the hills, and to try out the paces of the zoom lens. Some of the pictures were quite interesting:
We haven’t had a bad winter so far. There were some frosts but a lot of mild and overcast weather. We haven’t seen so many birds at the feeder because there was enough food available elsewhere, and even the ducks on the river have been few in number, though I have seen goosander, goldeneye and an occasional teal now and then. On the plus side, though, I’ve heard more owls this winter than I remember before. As the temperatures climbed a little and the days lengthened after Christmas, birdsong and territorial behaviour kicked up a notch, especially among the sparrows and starlings. Growth started in the garden, with early flowers and hazel catkins, and buds visibly swelling on many of the perennials, and I thought of clearing away the dead leaves from around the emerging plants.
I’m so glad I didn’t now. All that has come to a halt, with this beautiful cold snap, bringing the first real snow of the winter. It was down to -6 last night and it hasn’t reached zero yet, in spite of blazing sun. Coal tits, blue tits and great tits have joined the sparrows and pigeons at the feeder, though so far none of the riverbank species have joined them. And out in the fields, winter visitors are becoming slightly less shy.
I reckon these are roe deer, because you can see conspicuous white rumps. Red deer have paler patches, but they are not so obvious. They are in a field close to the road, apparently quite unafraid, though they seemed to be aware of us. In winter they come much closer to the village than in summer when they can almost disappear into the trees and reeds where the river winds away from the built up areas along the Hillfoots.
Although I have poetry to write and a new collection to edit from an author I have admired for many years, I’m a little distracted this week. I’m very excited about the potential of this camera. And as you can see, the #derangedpoetess thing is still going.