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    beech twig

    Birds on the run

    goosander on the run

    Although I spend much of my time doing natural history illustration, botanical drawing, science art, and natural science illustration I also do my best to try and keep fit.

    This is made a great deal easier thanks to the beautiful town where I live, Hay on Wye in the Welsh borders.

    One of my favourite jogs is down to the warren; a shingly beach on the banks of the river Wye, and back up through town.  Invariably, I see a wide array of animals, but this week the bird count was absurdly high!

    So, jogging across the common grazing land I spotted a buzzard overhead, doing its’ cat-like mew.

    run buzzard

    Buzzard Buteo buteo

    By the beach I spied a pair of goosander, then a mute swan

    goosander on the run

    Goosander Mergus merganser

    Swan Cygnus olor

    Into the beech woodland to be met by a tiny wren, then four fluffed up long tailed tits.

    Wren Troglodytes troglodytes

    Long tailed tit Aegithalos caudatus

    As I came out from under Hay bridge, I heard then saw a pair of glorious bullfinch, bickering.

    Bullfinch Pyrrhula pyrrhula

    Blackbirds and robins sang their territorial songs amongst the horse chestnuts.

    Blackbird, seen on my run

    Blackbird Turdus merula

    Robin Erithacus rubecula

    Finally, turning up by the car park to come into town again, I saw a couple of blue tits, in all their finery.

    Blue tit Cyanistes caeruleus

    I know this blog sounds more like a gloat or a list than anything else, but I really was overcome with joy at all these beautiful animals on my doorstep.  It almost made going for a run an enjoyable experience.  Almost….

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    Lizzie Harper