I am beginning to think I should have called this a Review rather than Highlights as its more of a precis of some of my better posts!
We grew Cosmos in the garden this year for the first time and one of the highlights for me was the number of hoverflies and bees it attracted. We shall grow a lot more next year.
Brian has always wanted a waterfall running down the rockery into the pond and this year, instead of using a solar pump to power a fountain which he had for his birthday, he used it to power a waterfall he finally built. Due to the bad weather it took months but we are well pleased with the result although it will look more natural when it has weathered. The birds love it and use the little pools it forms for bathing and drinking even more than they used the pond.
The number of moths trapped dropped off massively as the year progressed but here's a few I caught towards the end of the year.
Mother of Pearl
Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing
Brimstone - one of the really beautiful moths
One of the highlights of the Mothing Year was the publication of a really decent id guide for Micro Moths. I find a lot of the Macro Moths hard to identify but most Micros are a really challenge so am hoping this book will help!
I always try and visit Baddesley Clinton in September to see their wonderful display of dahlias. This year, if possible, I think they were even more stunning than usual and there was the added bonus of Scarecrows on an Olympian theme and the icing on the cake were the large number of butterflies on the wing in the Walled Garden.
Apologies for the number of photos but I have tried to be selective as there were hundreds I could have posted!
Most of the Scarecrows were in the Vegetable Garden - here's just a few
Lord Sebastian Crow
Sorry same photo. Won't delete as last time I tried this I lost half the photos I'd uploaded!!!!
Andy Straw Murray
Sir Chris Pak Choi
The Dahlia Bed
I paid another couple of visits to Brueton Park and the Warwickshire Wildlife Trust Parkridge Centre and NR in late summer/autumn. The birds on the main pool are very tame and I find it a good place to practice bird photography.
A collection of shots of Mallard, Moorhen, Greylag and Canada Geese
I've also discovered that there is a public footpath along the side of the river which I am hoping to walk along next year towards Widney. A walk done by Edith Holden and I shall be looking for some of the flowers she found.
Another visit to Brandon Marsh NR in September produced my first Hobby of the year from the Carlton Hide.
By the Visitor Centre I was privileged to get close views of a young rabbit that had not yet learnt to fear humans.
There will be just one more, hopefully, shorter!!! post tomorrow to finish off the series. Hope you have all enjoyed revisiting some of these places with me.