Mon 26 Jan 2009… up tails all

Swans on our local lake

After a chilly day, which had started grey and threatening, moved on to short rain showers with a stunningly colourful rainbow set against a mostly-blue sky; Daf and I took a pleasant late afternoon walk along the lane to the the lake, timing it so we would arrive as the sun was slowly setting, sending beautiful pink, flame and mauve reflections twinkling and rippling across the slow surface of the water.

There are myriad lifeforms living in and around this old reservoir, most of which are shy of humans and keep themselves hidden. As we arrived, the coot and moor hens scattered in a noisy flurry of wings, settling again in the centre of the lake, safe from our intrusion.

However, as we stood quietly for some time, absorbing the tranquility, one of the pair of swans we frequently see here glided gently across the water towards us, leaving his mate, more timid, quietly circling near the other birds. Most elegant of birds, he serenely put on a display like an effortless ballet, all the time keeping an eye on his entranced audience – how lucky to be in the presence of such a magnificent creature.

Gaining courage, his mate joined him in a pas de deux more graceful than anything seen at Covent Garden. Finally, certain we were little threat they began feeding ‘up tails all’, not so elegant and rather amusing us, but still the control and gentility was striking. Eventually, in the gathering darkness, they glided away together and we turned from the lake to walk home to the warmth and comfort of Coed y Berclas.


Posted: 2009-02-01