Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Happy Yew Year!

As you can see, New Year's Resolution #1 - to plumb new depths with bad puns in blog post titles - has been acted upon almost immediately. Other candidates considered for this post included:
  • 'Yew only live twice': would have continued an historic weakness for Bond film bad puns but would have also required me to explain how I went back on New Year's Day after an enthusiastic but not exactly quiet dog walker flushed some Hawfinches from the same churchyard Yews in Lytchett Matravers on New Year's Eve.
  • 'Coccothraustes in a Yew Tree': scans perfectly with 'And a Partridge in a Pear Tree', but too tenuous even by my low standards, and would have meant breaking a policy to not use scientific nomenclature in blog post titles (way too high-brow). Plus Christmas is so last year.
  • 'Graveyard of ambition': well they were in a graveyard, and as a title it would have been a satirical comment on itself.
  • 'Give me a Finch and I'll take a mile'. Inexplicably bad.
  • 'Haw-py New Year': no, just too awful. (Haw-ful, surely?)
Anyway, some Hawfinch photos follow to get the New Year off with a big, chunky bang.
Hawfinch, Lytchett Matravers: the recent invasion by this species has been a winter birding highlight of 2017-18
Although the birds were high in the Yews, by positioning the car carefully and staying inside the vehicle, I was able to photograph them against a more pleasing background than the harsh grey sky of New Year's Day
At least three birds were present
The impressive bill is clear to see here...
...while this picture shows the short, white-tipped tail
This crinkly-winged male refused to come out in the open
A Sparrowhawk against a rare bit of blue sky sent the Hawfinches deep into cover

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