A record of wildlife in my garden and various trips to the Warwickshire countryside and occasionally further afield.
"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."
From "Auguries of Innocence"
by William Blake
Tuesday, 5 July 2016
#30DaysWild (and latest Reading)
Just a short post on the final 2 weeks of 30 Days Wild. Activities while we were in Devon included watching bees and insects on flowers, looking for plants in walls, watching birds along the River Sid next to the cottage, trying to identify all the wildflowers seen in those beautiful high Devon hedgerows, observing bats hawking round the cottage at dusk, watching spiders spin webs around the cottage, a cruise along the Exe estuary looking for bids and admiring cloud formations in the evening.
To be honest I struggled to find time last week as, for various reasons, life was hectic. But I did try and find a few minutes to do a 30 Days Wild Activity each day.
Ragged Robin (grown from seed by B) is finally in flower in the newly planted bog garden. I really must go back to attempting water colour painting again soon although I suspect it is more of a winter activity initially when more time is available. If I can learn the basics I might be able to have another go at painting wild flowers next Spring and Summer.
I've been checking on the Orange Tip caterpillars on garden Honesty each day (highest count was ten). I still haven't found any pupae but will keep looking. Does anyone know if they pupate on the plant they have fed on or elsewhere?
I've been reading up on some of the stunning geology along the Jurassic coast and one night last week I put out the moth trap. To be honest I am finding it hard for some reason this year to get motivated with putting the trap out. Perhaps it is because we have had so much rain, or low catches or B moaning about finding moths in the fridge! Probably a combination of all three! Anyway, the trap contained my first Riband Wave of the year, dozens of Heart and Dart and Uncertain - believe it or not there is a moth of this name!! Plus a Figure of Eighty which I rarely trap here so I was quite chuffed.
Figure of Eighty
The garden feeders are attracting plenty of young birds - mostly Blue and Great Tits, Goldfinches and House Sparrows.
I've also been watching ants in the garden "milking" aphids. This is known as a mutualistic relationship as the ants protect the aphids from predators and the ants will stroke the aphids with their antennae to encourage them to release honeydew which is high in sugar.
I had plenty of ideas for activities but sadly time was lacking - well, there is always the rest of the Summer :) #StayWild
Books Read Recently
I've just finished reading "Absolute Truths" by Susan Howatch - the final book in the Starbridge series. I've really enjoyed re-reading the books again.
I've almost finished this book by Richard Fortey. I always love reading his books and this one is no exception.
If you are interested in Earth Science/Geology and/or The History of Life I would really recommend his books. The best ones to start with are probably
The Hidden Landscape - a Journey into the Geological Past
Life: An Unauthorised Biography
Fossils: The Key to the Past
He has also written a very good book on the years he spent working in the Natural History Museum, London called "Dry Store Room No. 1: The Secret Life of the Natural History Museum". In fact, any of his books are worth looking out for.
Tomorrow, back to the holiday posts - only 2 more days left to catch up on now!! :)
Welcome to my blog. I have been interested in natural history from an early age and we have tried to create a garden attractive to wildlife. I also enjoy reading, photography, collecting fossils, visiting historic buildings and gardens and supporting Aston Villa. Please feel free to leave a comment and, if you would like to email me, my email address is ciraggedrobinsATgmail.com - remember to replace AT with @. Thank you for visiting.