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Country diary: the old mystery of the 'devil birds'

22.06.2018
Příroda
Hathersage, Derbyshire: Vibrant and restless, swifts are never anywhere for longI'm not sure why Coggers Lane is so named. A "cogger" in these parts is someone who wields a hammer, and by extension someone who hammers people: a fighter. Hathersage has its moments, but I'm guessing the name is more a fossil of the village's industrial past. I do know it offers one of the prettiest views of the Derwent valley to the south, and to the east high above the gritstone cap of Higger Tor, richly coloured by the early evening sun. I stood drinking it in until the swarming midges drove me inside. When I emerged hours later the sky was deepening to black, on the threshold of night. Blinking in the gloom, I heard them first: an outburst of screaming that broke over my head. Looking up, half a dozen swifts were slicing and jinking through the thickening dark as they skimmed the roof, or else dived towards their young sheltering in the eaves. Then they were back out, blading through warm air still thick with those hateful midges. Their throats bulged with them, a ball of protein glued together with saliva to bring back to their brood. Continue reading...
Zdroj: The Guardian

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