Friday, 29 April 2022

Dear fellow bloggers, five days ago, I slipped on my balcony, fell into the railings, and injured my back, and broke three ribs. It has been very painful, and sitting at the computer makes my back ache, so for a while I'm going to take things easy. I had a post ready, to share with you of the roses on my balcony, and around my front door, so all I have to do is press post. See you soon.



















Wednesday, 13 April 2022

SPARROW HAWK at DUSK

As I was just about to close my bedroom shutters for the night, I saw a Sparrow Hawk perched on a nearby tree with a strange looking talon. The talon was outstretched in an awkward position. It was very obvious that one of it's talons was badly deformed. I don't know how this would have affected it's hunting. The images are not great, as the light was fading, but take a look and tell me what you think.










Friday, 8 April 2022

PET CLEAN

One day when my late husband was filling up the tank of his car, I was surprised  to see a dog cleaning station in a gas station, and I think it's a brilliant idea, especially if one happens to live by the seaside. So many people live in apartments who are the owners of large dogs, dogs that like to swim in the sea. Before returning home, the owners can just pull into the gas station where they are able to park their car, and give their dog a good scrub with the right temperature of water, wash them with shampoo, and then blow dry them. It is a great alternative to leaving them at a dog beauty parlour, which is not really required when all that is needed is a good wash and brush up to remove the sand, and it only takes a few minutes. I was impressed with this idea, and took some photos of  the station as I waited in the car. This is a little different, than my usual posts, but now and again I do like to share something about Portugal. 



 You can select the program you want, then elevate or lower the platform to whatever height you need, push the buttons for whatever else you require, and Hey Presto your dog is clean with the minimum of fuss. Are there any more dog washing stations out there?  I would be pleased to know, if you have seen them where you live, or have used them.



Cute , and it would seem clever dog washing himself/ herself. Ha ha!:=))


I think this dog was just cooling off.


He  looks a happy dog now.


I enjoyed watching the Golden Retriever doing what it does so well. 


Enjoying the swim, and taking something back to his master.


I will be linking up to Saturday's Critters, on Eileen's blog, with my thanks to our gracious host. Just click on the left side of my blog on  "Saturday's Critters," and it will take you to her post, and  you can join the party. 

Tuesday, 29 March 2022

HOOPOE VISITOR

 Last week Paula and I witnessed some unusual behaviour by a young Hoopoe  which we saw through my studio  window. Usually a very shy and secretive bird, but this Hoopoe just seemed inquisitive, as it walked up and down the roof, and looked through the window. It was a day when I didn't have my camera with me, so here are all the photos Paula took of the Hoopoe with her phone. Enjoy!











































Wednesday, 23 March 2022

FIRECREST, ROBIN, and FIELD MOUSE.

The Firecrest continues to visit my bedroom balcony. Here are a few captures of this charming little bird., which belongs to the kinglet family. It is one of the brightest, colourful European birds.



They eat small morsels, like spiders, moth eggs, and other insect food ...


but on my balcony they eat cake crumbs...


and finely chopped peanuts.


One day I hope to capture it on a  fine sunny day, as all my photos have been taken on dull days, which really doesn't do it justice.


The robin also eats cake crumbs and finely chopped peanuts....


as does the field mouse.


Two captures of this little gem. I have just had the thought, that as the weather warms up and there are more insects available, perhaps I won't see it again....


but I hope that is not the case.


Friday, 18 March 2022

GOATS and FOREST FIRES.

Around a third of Portugal is overgrown with forests, and every year there are forest fires. The main problem is the uncontrolled sprawl of Eucalyptus trees which has been problematic for decades. They burn like tinder, and flying sparks can spread forest fires for miles. There is still a lot to do to combat forest fires, but goats provide an innovative way to address the problem of bush fires.They clear the undergrowth that fuel wild fires in hard to reach, and often inaccessible inland areas. Goats eat almost anything, if it grows in the wild, a goat will eat it, add to that their agility in climbing rugged landscapes and you have, not the perfect solution for the prevention of spreading wild fires, but they do help to clear scrub land of undergrowth, and create natural cost effective fire barriers.



   A typical Portuguese goat herder with his dogs who are trained to herd at a young age, and in this case, even their puppies went along, and I enjoyed watching them.


An enlarged photo of the beautiful dog in the previous photo.


Some of the goats have been shaved.  
Some goat herders say that during the extreme heat of summer, the goats get stressed from overheating with their coats on. 


The puppies playing, but no doubt learning what their parents do. 


Goat herding is a Portuguese tradition. 


The Algarve goat, with dark spots on a white coat is indigenous to Portugal. I saw them on my last visit to the Algarve and photographed the scene with the intention of writing about them at a later stage. As the weather has been rainy with grey skies, it has  been just too unpleasant to venture outside, or take photos, but as we need the rain, it is a good opportunity to make this post. 


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