Just Swanning Around

Birds on the feeders at Whinlatter

Snowdrops at Martin Mere

Whooper Swans

Geese and lapwings

Eider ducks

Such a grey cold day but we ventured out to Martin Mere for an hour or so ,had a nice light lunch in the new restaurant there and then went to view the swans and other wildfowl from the Swanlink Hide.Luckily we also had a good view of some Ruff as a few were scratching around at the edge of the mere.There are still around 2,000 geese there and 1,000 whopper swans. In just a few weeks they will all have left to fly to their summer breeding grounds.
As nice as it was it was just too cold to hang around so we set off for home and a good warm fire.
The other photos were taken when we were at Whinlatter Forest Park up near Keswick and although it was raining the birds were singing from the high tree tops and then venturing down to the feeders where we took these photos.
If only the spring sun would shine for a few days as my Daffodils are just waiting for that burst of warmth to flower.
In my nature diary for 2009 it reveals that we were laying a new base for the greenhouse when we heard a "mewing cry" and above us 2 buzzards were circling - flying low and calling to each other then soared off over the houses. I remember it was a lovely blue sky day in February.

At this time of year it is good to indulge in eating a little of what you fancy and I love this recipe for Bara Brith which I found in The Lakes.
450grams sf flour
450grams mixed dried fruit
2 tblsp of warm marmalade and 1 egg beaten
6 tblsp of brown sugar
1/2 pint warm strained tea
1 teaspoon mixed spice
Soak the fruit, sugar in the tea overnight
Sieve flour and mixed spice and warm the marmalade.
Add flour ,warm marmalade and egg to soaked fruit
Stir all well
Pour into tin ,greased
Bake 1hr 30 mins mark 4, electric 180c 350f cool on rack
Slice and serve with best butter.


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