A huge amount of activity goes on as the sun heads for the horizon. This evening I noticed flocks of jackdaws circling. Quite a few of them were carrying nuts in their beaks. They made dramatic silhouettes against the late, pale afternoon sky.
Crows were feasting on sweet chestnuts.
The swans were stretching their wings.
And the seagulls were catching the rays of the setting sun on the undersides of their wings as they looped over the ponds.
There is something wonderful about the papery quality of pressed leaves. Some become almost transparent. They retain their colour as long as they're not left in direct sunlight. A great reminder of how colourful the world is when you're in the depths of January and feel like the world will stay brown and grey forever. They smell great, a bit like a barn full of newly cut hay.
The best time to pick and press leaves is in early spring before they've had holes eaten
After heavy rain is a great time to look for mushrooms and fungi. The variety is astonishing. But it's really hard to identify all but the obvious ones. Here is a jelly fungus a Yellow Staghorn, this is fairly easy to identify and is relatively common.
But here is a selection of other varieties that I'm still working my way through the excellent Roger Phillips Mushroom guide trying to identify. Might take a while.