Monday, 8 June 2015

30 Days Wild Day 8: Studying in the Park

I can't believe we are already eight days into June! This month is simply zipping by. I was working on portraits for most of today and had planned to do some studying later in the afternoon. I decided to take my coursework with me to our local country park in Southwater so that I could enjoy the outdoors at the same time as getting some more work done. Plus, I need my legs to turn just a shade darker than their current state of milky white!

It made such a great change working outdoors although I kept getting distracted by the various waterfowl, particularly the great-crested grebe which I'm always a sucker for. The coots and moorhens had chicks; some were brand new, just out of the nest, with yellow fuzz on their heads and surprisingly loud cries. Others were much older and near enough adults, awaiting their final molt. 

I'm always pleased to see areas that have been left to go wild and the verges in the park were absolutely filled with a variety of different grasses and wildflowers. There were plenty of these common spotted orchids scattered about, which is great for the bees and butterflies, although I still didn't see any of the latter. I think they must be avoiding me!

Common Spotted Orchid

The resident family of mute swans were sat in the sun, preening themselves. The parents have three cygnets this year who are still relatively young with their downy, grey plumage. They are almost perfect miniatures of the adults, excluding the colour differences. The neck of a swan is a thing of contradiction; it has a very graceful appearance but also looks incredibly strong, and it's easy to see how it could be used as a defense when they are feeling territorial.

I was glad to get out for a bit today, in between work, but I can't say that the environment was particularly helpful when it came to me focusing on my studies. What can I say: I can't help getting distracted by the wildlife!

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