Grouse

Catchin’ Rays

The sun-worshipper
The sun-worshipper

My pet blackcock has been standing in this position since ten o’clock this morning. The only slight variation on this theme have been his eyelids, which close periodically as part of a staggered pattern of blinks. An American might describe this activity as “catchin’ some rays”, but one thing is certain; that nothing looks smarter than a blackcock in the sunshine.

Today is being billed as the hottest day of the year so far, but there was still a crisp coolness to my walk over the hill at half past five this morning. A single blackcock was lekking invisibly in a fold of haggs and broken ground, but the main stars of the morning were cuckoos, which kept up an incessant pulse of noise which almost threatened to overwhelm the skylarks. I was furiously barked at by a roe deer, then was back in my office by 7am.

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