Thursday, 3 March 2016
Over the past month or so I have been trying to draw Long Tailed Tits with not too much success. I wanted to draw them from life but can never get close enough and their visits to the garden are very unpredictable. Instead I have been using various photographs found on the internet and in my bird books.
Whilst looking up some of the curious names they are known by I found this poem by John Clare.
The oddling bush, close sheltered hedge new-plashed,
Of which spring’s early liking makes a guest
First with a shade of green though winter-dashed –
There, full as soon, bumbarrels make a nest
Of mosses grey with cobwebs closely tied
And warm and rich as feather-bed within,
With little hole on its contrary side
That pathway peepers may no knowledge win
Of what her little oval nest contains –
Ten eggs and often twelve, with dusts of red
Soft frittered – and full soon the little lanes
Screen the young crowd and hear the twitt’ring song
Of the old birds who call them to be fed
While down the hedge they hang and hide along.