The Grackles are back in the garden …….. say what you will, this is an unusually handsome bird even if he isn’t house trained and cute

The Geese are coming through daily now, sometimes pausing to rest on the ice which is gradually retreating from the shoreline

And, of course, the Gulls are once again with us. I could have posted an ornithologically stunning picture here but thought I’d be better employed illustrating their disgusting habits. There is a small prize for anyone who can suggest what this chap was busily eating – can’t tell but it made a significant and probably painful bulge in the birds throat as it was eventually swallowed whole with a gulp and some crossing of the eyes …. what do you think it might be?

Back in the garden, the snow is now almost all gone and the stray snowdrops illustrated here a few days ago have been joined by this magnificent clump …. well, OK, from and English garden point of view or even from a Vancouver garden point of view it’s pretty pathetic but it has taken us 9 springs here to get even this large a clump established. These were accidentally transplanted a season or two ago with a fern we moved to a back corner and they seem to really like their new environment – we shall experiment with moving more odd flowers to the same are in the hope that they form something approximating to a decent show while we are still alive to enjoy them (only 42 years to my royal telegram).