The call of the coast

Brenda writes: “Today didn’t work out as I had planned and I found myself observing the astonishing thing that is a hospital A&E department. From the paramedics who were looking after my mum in the ambulance as she waited for an x-ray to establish whether she had broken her hip and the doctors who sorted out her pain relief, to the surgical team who assessed her and decided on the treatment, I saw kindness, professionalism and an ability to improvise if necessary. As I was leaving a lovely lady called Bernadette was just about to give mum tea and sandwiches.

After 6 hours at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital I needed to clear my head, so I took the coast road home and headed to Snettisham RSPB. I think I may not have been there since before lockdown and it was lovely to be back on a gloriously sunny evening. The trees were full of chiffchaffs, most of whom definitely wanted to be seen and were perched on top of trees in full view. Also lots of Cetti’s warblers one of which I briefly glimpsed as it blurted its song at me from about 3 metres away and then flew off – and a lovely flock of linnets. The reserve is an extraordinary man-made landscape of former gravel pits, now a wonderfully rich habitat for nature.

And then once you reach the bank there is an endless view over the wash and yet another wonderful Norfolk sunset.”

Meanwhile I was still working today at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and only managed a brief walk at lunch time in the local Bute Park, onto which the College backs. The only thing I’ve been noticing is that there are several lesser black-backed gulls around here. I expect to see (and hear!) herring gulls in many cities, and often black-headed gulls, but I think that this is the first time that I have consciously noted lesser black-backed gulls in an urban environment.

No new species for April 4th: