A Sign of Spring
The winter of 2009/2010 has been the worst on record here in Algarve. We have had lower temperatures, heavier rain and stronger winds in previous years but this winter we have had a miserable three months of continuous rain.
For me, the indication that "spring is here" is the arrival of the Woodchat Shrikes. I saw my first one this year on 3rd March which is a few days later than usual, and they appear to be present in lower numbers than previous years.
In previous years I have had a pair nesting in a Pomegranate hedge in my garden and one or both birds arrived on 28th February every year except in a "Leap Year" when they arrived on the 29th!!! Regrettably, they have not been here for the past two years.
This female actually perched on my shoulder for a few seconds whilst I was working in the garden - total magic.