Lexie Conyngham's Blog: writing, history and gardening.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015


Not the most brilliant photo in the world, but not too bad for a point-and-press at dusk with the bus coming!

I was waiting in the dregs of snow at a bus stop when a little murmuration of starlings, only 120 or so, met in the tree on the right. They paused, formulating their plans, then burst out in a bubble, bouncing around the sky. Then they established their sequence: they spread themselves out to the left, across the road beside me, losing a few tens of them as they went. Then the great sausage shape sprang back into a ball and gathered up some of the strays like blutac quickly rolle around a student's bedroom wall.

The building on the left has an ivy covered wall at the back: the ball of starlings hurled itself towards the ivy again and again, scraping off a few more starlings on each circuit to rest in the ivy, until the whole ball had vanished into the wall. They waited there, and the rest of the strays gradually joined them. There was a pause for breath, then out they shot and started all over again, spreading out, rolling up, and gradually roosting.

Book launch on Tuesday! I think I'm ready!


  1. I enjoyed all the description, but particularly liked the phrase "murmuration of starlings." Good luck on your book launch.

  2. I think it's the technical term, so I can't claim any credit - it is a particularly evocative one, though, isn't it? Thanks - same to you!