Albrecht Dürer

There was a good Dürer exhibition in Nuremberg this year, but it was very full. Fortunately I got there very early in the day, but still by eleven it was too full to read the rather well-done and succinct texts, especially with bifocals.

And I have still not visited the Albrecht-Dürer-Schwein in Hundshaupten.

However, Dürer did appear on a float at the Fürth harvest festival procession last week:

The text is a reference to the refusal by the Alte Pinakothek in Munich to send a self-portrait to the exhibition because it was not suitable for transport.

Here’s a Protestant church representative showing how exciting 18th-century glasses were:

Winter bird count/Die Stunde der Wintervögel

Stunde der Wintervögel. Birds spotted by me in the Stadtpark (lower level) on Sunday from 13.10 to 14.10 (largest number at one time) in a break from the rain, river running high, no sun:

Blackbird Amsel 7
Fieldfare Wacholderdrossel 1
Magpie Elster 3
Blackheaded gull Lachmöwe 4
Mallard Stockente 7
Coot Bläßhuhn 2
Moorhen Teichhuhn 2
Greylag geese Graugans 39
Great tit Kohlmeise 2
Bluetit Blaumeise 150
Tree sparrow Feldsperling 2
Carrion crow Rabenkrähe 7

The online list to register these birds is heavily garden-biased. Thank goodness I didn’t see any peacocks. Here are the most common birds in (a mere) 182 Fürth gardens a year ago (but the results for this year do show the greylag geese – don’t know where the Canada geese had gone):

House sparrow Haussperling
Great tit Kohlmeise
Blackbird Amsel
Bluetit Blaumeise
Greenfinch Grünfink
Tree sparrow Feldsperling
Magpie Elster
Jay Eichelhöher
Robin Rotkehlchen
Chaffinch Buchfink
Nuthatch Kleiber
Carrion crow Rabenkrähe
Collared dove Türkentaube
Great spotted woodpecker Buntspecht
Wood pigeon Ringeltaube
Goldfinch Stieglitz
Rook Saatkrähe
Long-tailed tit Schwanzmeise
Siskin Erlenzeisig
Crested tit Haubenmeise

The British equivalent is called the Big Garden Birdwatch

Cattle egret/Kuhreiher/Bubulcus ibis

This is a bit of a cheat as I see it in Nuremberg Zoo, in an en closure that the public can go into, with ibis, black stork and spoonbill.

But they are beginning to breed in England, along with little egrets. I just wanted to link to this brilliant headline: Egrets? We’ve had a few, in the Independent (the yellowish-brown colouring is in the breeding season, apparently).

Muskrat misnamed/Umbenennen der Bisamratte?

The animal party wants to rename the muskrat:

Partij voor de Dieren wil nieuwe naam muskusrat

PERSBERICHT Groningen, 6 oktober 2008 – Als onderdeel van de zojuist gestarte campagne voor de waterschapsverkiezingen, lanceert de Partij voor de Dieren een wedstrijd rondom het bedenken van een nieuwe naam voor de muskusrat. De muskusrat is namelijk helemaal geen rat, maar een soort woelmuis. Hij staat dichter bij de hamster en de bever dan bij de zwarte en de bruine rat.

(via Onze Taal)

Nuremberg Zoo/Tiergarten Nürnberg

It’s just been announced that the polar bear cub Flocke will be on public view from April 9. Here is a guide for visitors – after all, the school Easter holidays end next Friday, so from March 31 there will be a few days to visit the Zoo while it’s still civilized.

I can’t get the hang of Google Maps, but if you scroll to the right here you will eventually see the zoo, marked with a blue line.

View Larger Map

It is embedded in deep forest, on a hilly and wooded site, and you can see the sandstone where the stone for Nuremberg Castle was quarried. So it’s quite a large and civilized zoo for the visitor – less so for some of the animals. A bit like a mixture between a more generously planned zoo and a crowded inner-city zoo. It would still be in Dutzendteich if Hitler hadn’t wanted that area for a parade ground. And look what happened to that.

Parking is difficult except on the civilized days I just mentioned. So do yourself a favour and get the tram from the main railway station. At the moment, it normally runs every ten minutes and takes fifteen minutes to get there, and you get out closer to the zoo than if you had to park some distance away.

See more in the continuation.

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Telling the cats/Gespräch mit Katzen zu undeutlich für Verurteilung

Telling the bees is an old tradition, but telling the cats should perhaps be avoided. The Times Online:

A pensioner who was charged with murdering his partner after police recorded him apparently confessing to his cats was cleared yesterday by a jury that decided his comments were the ramblings of an old man.

David Henton, 72, was hugged by members of the jury before returning home to his two long-haired Persian cats Pudsey and Twinkle.

I suppose long-haired Persian cats are even harder to groom than normal Persian cats.

The content of the recordings was disputed:

At one point according to the prosecution, Mr Henton said: “Good God alive. Don’t panic now. Police car I got. Good God I don’t believe I’ve done it.” But the defence version of the same segment read: “Good God alive. Police car I got . . . come on now, I’m coming,” interrupted by coughing, a clunk and road noise.