Having zoomed in on my ipad photo of these insects – I am not intelligent enough to get the zoomed image onto the blog – sorry. Will keep trying.
We have odd-looking insects on the stalks of the pond irises. They look like large insects at the front and pupae at the rear end. They have sat there for two days in the same position. Are they waiting for their wings to develop? Are they alderflies? Predators of the pond bottom who emerge in spring and early summer? Just late this year, like everything else? Have taken photos of them with new I-pad.
The herring gull that nested on our balcony in St Ives laid three eggs. There was a fracas with neighbouring gulls a couple of days ago and she ended up with only one egg. I wasn’t there to see what happened. The couple staying at the house were kindly feeding her toast under the glass screen. They said that she was not alarmed at them being so close with the glass doors open. They were very sensitive to her condition and kept quiet when they were in the room.
But today they say that they found the last egg broken and no chick in sight. The female is still on the balcony, looking bewildered. I wonder if they will mate again, lay again this season?
On surrounding roofs are many other nests with young chicks.
We cleaned out the almost dry pond – probably the wrong time of year etc – but it was full of totally matted weed. Left it on the edge so that creatures could crawl back into the pond. Found nothing apart from daphnia, and tadpole-like critters, but miniature. What can they be? No water snails. We have too many water plants, I think. Our spring cleaning caused muddy water, but refilled pond with tap water – I know, not a terribly good idea. But it’s been too cold/wet to do it before now. Bluebells still flowering in the garden along with just flowering foxgloves. Apple trees blossoming.
On the way to the carboot sale – Long Lane between St Erth and Rosudgeon today was bursting with spring wild flowers : Cow parsley, bluebells, pink campion, star of Bethlehem, garlic flowers, buttercups, and the occasional bright yellow explosion of gorse flowers. It’s baby rabbit time, so you have to watch the grass verges carefully. A successful carboot – bought a heavily embroidered linen bedspread, and a lobster for supper! A woman from Cadgwith sells whole crabs and lobsters, scallops and crabmeat in tubs, and mussels. I am cooking the lobster with garlic and parsley butter in the Rayburn as I haven’t a grill at Hawke’s Point. Serving it with a new potato salad and a green salad (our neighbour Harry’s lettuce). Rob says lobster is wasted on him, but I couldn’t resist. I used to have a boyfriend who was a diver. He would turn up with a live lobster in his haversack. I remember leaving one in the empty sink while we had a drink, and Nathan – a little boy, then, felt sorry for it and filled the sink with water. The lobster woke up and thrashed around so violently we had great difficulty getting the plug out. The kitchen floor was soaked. So were we. It was delicious!
Back to a vicious, northerly, wind today. The copper beech waited longer than ever this spring to break into leaf, but to no avail. The leaves will burn with cold. The apple blossom will blow away. Will we ever get a summer? Our small pond is a popular bathing spa for the small birds. Two blackbirds and a chaffinch shared the delights of splashing and fluttering in the shallows and emerged with halos of duckweed.
One of the two beautiful tabby tom kittens – adolescent now – belonging to a neighbour at the top of the hill, has found his way down the path from Headland Rd, over the railway track, down the coast path into our garden and into the house. Flo is not pleased. Neither is the gull who usually benefits from her leftovers.
The interloper ate the leftovers of Flo’s kidney diet breakfast and is hanging around determined to get back into the house, even though I have now locked the catflap. When I’m dressed I’ll carry him back up the hill. I worry that he’ll get run over by the train.
The Queen came to St Ives today by the little train that goes behind our house on the edge. A sunny morning, bunting flying, and I waited on the deck with my flags ready to wave. I had been told that she was coming at 10.30, so when the train trundled by, I waved and jumped up and down, patriotically. Then I had to go out to visit someone, and saw by the railway crossing, a little gathering of people waiting to see the Queen. I had got the time wrong and couldn’t wait. I hope she appreciated the bunting. She would have missed the wonderful display of daisies on the roadside on her way out of town, as the council had sent out the grass cutters the day before, and destroyed them all. I bet she loves daisies. I do. The smell of daisies is like nothing else – bitter, but clean. This afternoon the rain came in, of course, and the bunting is sodden and has practically blown away.