First Days Of March

The first of March is the beginning of the meteorological Spring, in the shelter from the wind and with the sunshine this afternoon, the air held the promise of warmer days to come.

Across my local patch, the farmers are busy ploughing.  The sky is full of gulls, their white wings in contrast with the dark earth of the newly ploughed fields. More and more poured through the sky and across the fields, I wonder how they let each other know that there is plough going on and therefore an easy meal.


The local rooks and Red kites also take advantage. At one stage I counted 8 Red Kites, many more than my local patch normally holds. Do the Red Kites follow the gulls in or do they use the thermals to rise to great heights enabling them to see many miles in all directions?

I watch as the group of Gulls rotate, landing behind the tractor and picking food off the ground. As the tractor moves on the next group lands, then the next, then the next and by this time the first group has taken to the skies to catch up with the tractor for their next turn at feeding.

As the tractor turns at the end of the field, all the gulls gather in the sky like a mini murmuration before falling in behind the tractor as it begins on its next furrow.


While the gulls create a mass frenzy of wings and screams, the more majestic Red Kites strut and hop along the last furrow in a much more control manner. A couple of times I was worried that a particular  Red Kite was leaving it so late to get out of the way of the approaching tractor that it would disappear under the huge wheels.

Amongst the gulls and rooks were a few Lapwings, standing out with their distinctive call.


Over in the next field, sat quietly away from the activity was the  female Roe deer  with her young from last year.

I slowly started to creep towards them counting ten steps then taking a group of photos, careful not to disturb their resting.

After about fifty steps the young male stood up, so I slowly got on to my knees until they relaxed again. This allowed me to take a few more photos before I left them in peace.


About Alex White - Appletonwild

This is my diary of the wildlife where I live in Oxfordshire, and sometimes the places I visit. My passion is for British wildlife, especially Badgers and Hares. This year my debut book "Get Your Boots On" was published I am a keen amateur photographer. All the photographs on this blog are taken by myself unless stated otherwise. I am a member of A Focus on Nature, the network for Young Nature Conservationists, BBOWT, The Oxon Mammal group and The Oxfordshire Badger Group. You can also follow me on Twitter @Appletonwild Instagram appletonwild
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6 Responses to First Days Of March

  1. Tony says:

    A lovely account, Alex. Interesting how simple day to day farming procedures can assist the bird communities. Their activities play such an important role which is often overlooked. Impressed to hear you had Red-listed Lapwings hanging around too. I hope for you, they stay on to breed.

    Best Wishes

    Tony Powell

    Liked by 1 person

  2. New Moons For Old says:

    How fortunate you are that the farmers local to you still do spring ploughing and sowing, rather than the autumn sowing which is now so common.

    You certainly demonstrate great field craft in getting close to the roe deer, and have been rewarded with some lovely photos.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. David Stimpson says:

    Hi Alex great pictures I like the red kite one great shots

    Liked by 1 person

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