Ducking and diving like kids at the baths

Ducking and diving like kids at the baths

A hot, hot day at the start of this month. Two broods of ducklings which had been about the ifrst to hatch this year along the canal, now getting their adult feathers. The two groups were together – and all alive. To keep cool, they were playing. Doing all the thinks kids aren’t supposed to do at the swimming baths. Charging at each other. Power-diving, submerging only for a second. Shaking like a wet dog to dry off.

Flag irises, flower about to open

Flag irises, flower about to open

Flag irises, growing at the edge of the small amount remaining of open water in the pond at Compton Park. Pictured earlier this month as the flowers were just about to open.

Swimming serenely by, swans, Castlecroft

Swimming serenely by, swans, Castlecroft

A swan family with half-grown cygnets, swimming by apparently serenely, on the canal at Castlecroft.

Rustic sailor beetle

Rustic sailor beetle

a rustic sailor beetle – confusingly, a type of soldier beetle – on a fern leaf.

Young wagtail on a fence post

Young wagtail on a fence post

Young wagtail on a fence by the canal. Not worried even when I got quite close, probably because of inexperience.

Tree bumble bee on footbridge

Tree bumble bee on footbridge

Tree bumble bee resting on the wooden railing of the footbirdge over the pool, Compton Park

Tree bumble bee on footbridge

Smooth newt cooling off

Smooth newt cooling off

Small, young smooth newt cooling off on a hot afternoon by almost submerging itself in a bird bath. The spider by its tail is probably not aquatic.

Smooth newt cooling off

Goslings, Dimmingsdale

Goslings, Dimmingsdale

Goslings, quite well grown, almost under the shadow of Dimmingsdale bridge on the canal. The Canada goose parents were keeping a close watch nearby.

Lone duckling, recently hatched, Compton

Lone duckling, recently hatched, Compton

One lone duckling, so small it looked very recently hatched, on the canal near Compton Lock. The mother mallard was very near by, just out of shot.

After noon, jack go to bed at noon

After noon, jack go to bed at noon

Successive stages in the development, post flowering, of a jack by the hedge (meadow salsify)

Feeding time: starling, Bantock Park

Feeding time: starling, Bantock Park

Bantock Park: a starling searching among the closely mown grass of the formal lawn area for worms and other food to take back to young at the nest.

Lone poppy by a canal bridge

Lone poppy by a canal bridge

Lone poppy flowering by the brickwork of the bridge over the canal at Dimmingsdale, the first wild poppy I noticed this year.