A cormorant flying high, following the River Avon downstream over Stratford. Presumably heading for a less disturbed stretch of the waters.
Heron watching for fish just downstream of the River Avon lock on the Avon at Stratford. A swan was also nearby, a few yards along the shore of the island separating the lock from the weir.
The river was high after lots of recent heavy rain. The water coming down the weir was making standing waves in the river. Perhaps the heron’s prey was fish taking refuge in the backwash just upstream of this disturbance.
A second set of blue mushrooms at Compton Verney. These were in the shade of a huge cedar, in the middle of the wide lawn directly in front of the big house.
The colour, much faded, washed out by repeated bouts of heavy rain, a greenish-blue, or blueish-green. The colour and the scaly stem indicate they are verdigris agarics, now sometimes also being called verdigris roundheads (Stropharia aeruginosa).
It’s not just the tourist attractions, shops and restaurants of Stratford on Avon which have been hit by the fall in tourist numbers during the pandemic. The huge crowds of swans which gather on the river where it flows through the centre of the twon seem to be somewhat reduced in numbers. Many do still remain. In the absence of human-provided bread or gain, they are resorting more often to flocking to the Recreation Ground on the left bank, cropping grass.
Macro-fungi come in many colours which are not found, or are found only very rarely, in plants or animals. But only a handful of British species are blue. On a visit to Compton Verney in Warwickshire at the start of this month, we came across two different blue species in the grounds.
I’m not sure what species these were. Although they had been up for some time, and were showing signs of age, most still kept some of their bright blue colours. They were in a small patch of open ground surrounded by a variety of different trees and bushes at the back of the ice house.