Showing posts from December, 2013

The curious case of the witches brooms ...

When out walking the other afternoon I encountered a few silver birch trees in a line with these peculiar twig clusters. Against the weak winter's afternoon sky they looked quite sinister and it was easy to see why our country ancestors called these witches brooms! Whether it was genuinely believed this was the work of witches I do not know but, as always it seems, science has come along and put paid to long standing myths.

Buzzards stand out in a crowd

We are used to seeing buzzards (Buteo buteo) soaring in the sky on sunny days or perhaps sitting on a telegraph pole or fence post but a report of between seven and twelve regularly standing in a field near Dorchester (just west of Compton Valance) reminded me that about four years ago there were fifteen on the ground in a field near Puddletown. Is this unusual or bizarre behavior? I made enquiries and it seems not.