Hereford's Warmest Day of 2024 (so far) and Wood Pigeons A-courting

The warmest day of the year (so far) in Hereford occurred on the 12th April (Figure 1) with temperatures reaching 21 ℃ between 3.30 pm and 4.30 pm (Figure 2). This daily high comfortably beat the previous record of 19 ℃ that occurred the day before (11th April). [Note: the following day (13th April) turned out to be the UK's warmest, so far, of 2024 with the mercury hitting 21.8 ℃ at Writtle in Essex].

Figure 1: Daily Maximum Temperatures (1st January 2024 to 12th April 2024)

Figure 2: Maximum Temperatures (15-minute periods) for 12/4/24 in Hereford

The Met Office gave a high probability to the 12th April being the hottest day so far.

We have seen hotter days in Hereford even earlier in the year: for example, 23 ℃ on the 30th March (2021) and 22 ℃ on the 5th April (2020). For the past two years, we have had to wait until 15th April (2022) and the 29th April (2023) for our first 'heatwave'!

When the weather gets warmer, it is time to start thinking of the birds and the bees. The local wood pigeons (well, perhaps only the males) have been feeling frisky for awhile now. The females seem to be, in the main, largely disinterested. I was looking out of the window this morning when I spotted a pair sitting on the trellis of the Paradise Garden. By the time I managed to get my camera ready, I had missed the very brief courtship routine of the male and the mutual preening and only caught the 'not today, darling' moment (Video 1).

Video 1: Wood Pigeon's Pairing Up?

Here is someone else's video showing the wood pigeon's courtship ritual ...

Video 2: Wood Pigeons a-courting


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