Friday, 8 July 2016


It is early morning, the night rain has passed 
and I am drawn to the bedroom window by a clatter. It is pigeon wings. An amorous male is dipping his head to the ground in obeisance to a female who is studiously ignoring him. He wanders after her like a lost soul - driven on by his hormones and her pheromones.

There are woodpeckers on the peanuts, greater spotted, female, male and juvenile. One flies up into the big ash and begins to hammer at the trunk.

Far down the garden the unprotected red currants have gone, eaten by the blackbirds, but those behind the netting are surviving. So I picked some and bunged them on a blue plate. There is a pound of juicy tart fruit and they are now in the freezer. 

Meanwhile a cock blackbird is leaping from the ground into the black currant bushes and gorging itself on the fruit.

We have a swallow sits outside the other window, the one that looks out over the pond, over the bay, and ignores the fact that we are only a few feet from it. At the corner of the roof are a cluster of seven fledgling tree sparrows, squabbling and chasing one another across the slates. 

When an adult arrives chaos reigns as they clamour to be fed.

These are not the only fledglings - there are both great and blue tits, chaffinches and collared doves, greenfinches and goldfinches everywhere. Then there are the skulkers - dunnocks, wrens and robins. The dunnocks, inconspicuous and promiscuous, are mostly silent but wrens tack through the shrubbery like a high-sterned galleons, silent now but in spring, all cannons thundering. Robins are robins, cantankerous and endearing at the same time, following me as I weed looking for upturned lunch - and I haven't mentioned house martins and house sparrows.

And never forget the bunny rabbits!

Sunday and we visited a house at Barbon under the NGS scheme and R bought a white delphinium. Whether it survives in our slug and snail ridden garden is debatable but I have put it behind netting to at least deter the bunnies.

Today is Monday and I have braved the afternoon showers to pick fruit - everything is coming at once - and make some spelt flour bread. (Have to admit I cut off the end whilst still warm and ate it will salty butter soaking in.)

The gooseberries and blackcurrants are in the freezer, the redcurrant eaten as part of a Pavlova - fruit, cream and meringue - and a little sugar as the currants are tart.

From outside there comes a laugh, not a woodpecker but a jay with his wonderful blue feathers - a supreme twitchy nervous bird biot highly intelligent - a member of the crow family.

Come Wednesday and it is insects that draw our attention - there is a strange noise in the bathroom like dripping water. I cannot find the source until I go up in the loft and meet wasps!
We have a nest in the roof space over the bathroom dormer. They are bad enough (or good enough if you are an ecologist) in the garden but not in the house - so bye bye.

Now, let me explain the next two pics - R gave me a cam for my birthday and I set it up in the wood. So - what did I get?

Me leaving last night

and me coming back today to see what rare beasts I had captured!!

So, try again and I got me putting away a ladder in the shed!

1 comment:

  1. Love all the different birds you have there.