Monday, 2 March 2015

We've had some very wintry weather the last couple of days.We went over to Bleasdale yesterday and watched hares chasing one another in the biting cold wind as the snow fell. This morning wasn't much better, very windy and cold with snow flurries. We did see about 40-50 Oystercatchers feeding in a waterlogged field just outside Dunsop Bridge alongside a few Curlew and Gulls. On Saturday about 8am we had two deer feeding in the garden. The primroses have been out by the stream for a few days now, very cheerful.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

The rabbits have discovered its nice and dry under the log piles and been burrowing. The woods are full of little piles of cone cores and scales often on mossy tree stumps with a good view of the surroundings where the squirrels have sat eating. The foxgloves are coming through where we have cleared wood, they should look amazing in summer. The lawn is a mess after the snow, the moles, wildbirds and pheasants feeding on it, its a good job I like wildlife.


Sunday, 8 February 2015

We've had a beautiful start to February, ok its cold but we've had lots of fine sunny days with clear blue skies and yesterday we sat outside in the sun having our lunch. The trees are full of birdsong and the Nuthatches are back at the nestbox they used last year. Barrie made four more nestboxes we just have to decide where to put them. All the wildlife are getting frisky we have a resident pair of rabbits back guarding the garden, two were fighting so hard they nearly  ran into us when we were sat outside. One of the male pheasants is displaying at the females who just run off - there is still snow on the ground after all, what is he thinking. The sunsets have been spectacular, casting light on the mist in the valley turning it a violet hue and catching the tops of the larches a fiery gold.

Monday, 2 February 2015

Barrie looked out into the garden last night and saw a deer close by the house outlined in the silvery light of an almost full moon. The snowdrops are out in the garden, "Candlemas Bells" as my gran called them, fitting for today.

Friday, 30 January 2015

The snows back with a vengeance, but it hasn't put off some of the wildlife. I found two slugs mating and found a caterpillar on one of my chinese cabbages, in the polytunnel. The garden looks very Narnian and the deer have been visiting. We had a brief thaw and it revealed lots of vole holes and tracks showing just how active they had been under the snow.

Monday, 26 January 2015

The snow has been with us for several days and its amazing how busy the garden is with wildlife coming in to feed. The first to come and the last to leave are always the robins and a party of Long Tailed Tits. The pheasants, rabbits and deer leave plenty of tracks and are getting very tame. I've got some new pastel pencils and had a go doing a quick pastel portrait of one of the Texel tups that are up here.

I used Derwent Pastel Pencils on Daler- Rowney Pastel Paper

Pheasant and Rabbit tracks

Ewes enjoying their extra winter rations

Saturday, 24 January 2015

We put wire baskets round some plants to protect them from rabbits and have been putting food in some for voles (so the pheasants don't eat it). They leave little muddy trails as they come and go in the snow. In the morning there are always fresh deer tracks in the snow, especially by the allotment.

Deer tracks

Vole run