For there are still Dragonflies about today, lit beautifully in a bright low sun and patrolling the river. I was running along the path opposite the castle when a flash of brilliant yellow green darted out of a bush, and then the turqoise-green abdomen hoops of what I always take to be a Southern Hawker revealed itself.
I ran round the Island by the weir, sadly the blackberries are al but over - I'm rubbish at working out the best time to forage them, I only remember them when they are stomach rottingly underripe or a dog urine coated bird pecked dying mess. But attractive Hips, Haws and Elderberries and other winter fruit are decorating woodland and hedgerow. The young Moorhens skate the banks on their comedy feet.
Grebes are about on both London Road and Balderton lakes, but not many Tufted Ducks at the moment. Mallards are coming out of eclipse, they always show finest in October, green heads sheened in blue.
Up on Beacon Hill, the grasses are wild, aforementioned berries paint the hedgerows in spots of black and red; but butterfly park is closed for another year. The Buddleiahs are all but over, purple and white flowers gone to brown till early summer, although there are still Commas, Peacocks and Red Admirals to be seen on the wing, riding the savage winds we've had the last few days.