eyjafjallajoekull and the patch

Friday, April 16, 2010

Living in London can be a bit noisy, what with all the planes flying over and all that.  The patch is on one of the flight lines to Heathrow, which means that there is almost always a large plane flying over or about to fly over.  Noisily.  This means that apart from the disproportionately loud song of the local Wrens, you cannot hear a bird singing unless it is sitting on your head.  Many of you will know that due to the ashen belching of the splendidly named Eyjafjallajoekull there are no planes flying over.  At all.  With this in mind, I took up a vantage point on the river bank yesterday to listen for distant song (hoping for a Blackcap again) and to see if the lack of air traffic would increase the amount of raptor activity from zero to one. 


Why I continue to think that the patch will produce like this, I don't know.  But it is what you do as a patch birder.  Hope, dream, expect.  My raptor watch produced nearby Gulls, Crows and Cormorants.  Pigeons too.  The hardcore skywatching produced distant Gulls, Crows and Cormorants.  Pigeons too.

A bit like this.


As I write, the latest news is that there are no planes flying until this evening at the earliest, so it will be quiet again.  But I shall not adapt my activity today, and just go for a normal frustrating day in the patch rather than a different frustrating day in the patch.

Finally, if you are in London, take a look into the sky today.  When was the last time you looked up and didn't see a contrail?

The sky at night containing ash from Eyjafjallajoekull supposedly.


Andrew said...

The lack of contrails has been hidden by wall to wall cloud from my office window, but I took joy in knowing that somewhere up there a plane wasn't passing overhead.

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