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Most users ever online was 112 on 8th October 2020, 7:09 am
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» whats on the menu
by Chilli-head 22nd November 2020, 6:40 pm

» What are you harvesting today?
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» Frosts come to the garden in November
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» Astypalea goes green
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» The October garden
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» Tomato Relish
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» Bit of a wobble
by Dandelion 17th August 2020, 9:48 pm

» Ex-commercial hens
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» Pesky blackbirds
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Post by Ploshkin on 10th June 2020, 7:24 pm

The last time I saw ladybirds in any numbers was about 15 years ago when we had an infestation on one of our fields. There were tens of thousands and they (or their larvae) completely wrecked the grass which had been shut out for silage.

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Post by Dandelion on 15th June 2020, 10:23 pm

Ploshkin wrote:The last time I saw ladybirds in any numbers was about 15 years ago when we had an infestation on one of our fields.  There were tens of thousands and they (or their larvae) completely wrecked the grass which had been shut out for silage.
Shocked Shocked
It's not what you expect from our favourite national insect - it sounds more like locusts than ladybirds! I suppose any insect en masse is a bad thing.

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by Ploshkin on 19th June 2020, 9:25 pm

I recall saying a while back that we had sighted 2 barn owls and were hoping for the patter of tiny claws in our shed roof. Well, from my nightly listening I know that we have had a happy event and that there are at least 2 owlets.
I'm really chuffed because last night, after quite a few attempts, I got some video clips with a camera trap. In one of them you can see that the owl has a dead mouse or rat in its beak and it flies up to where the nest is.
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Post by Ploshkin on 24th June 2020, 11:29 am

I'm getting a number of video clips every night of the barn owls. They seem to be hunting very well. I can only put the camera at one end of the void so I move it to the other end every few days. Whichever end it is it catches 3 or 4 rodents being taken in to the nest. It's not always possible to see but a lot of them are short tailed voles which I know are the favoured prey of barn owls.
Video clips are too big to load so I have saved a couple of frames.
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Post by Dandelion on 25th June 2020, 10:41 pm

Wow!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Ploshkin on 29th June 2020, 9:57 am

I'm so thrilled.  My camera picked up the babies in the early hours - 3 of them lined up in the gap, bobbing their heads up and down then just at the very end of the clip a fourth appeared.
Unfortunately, the timer was set until 5.00am and that was the final clip.  I've extended the time for tonight.  It very much appeared that they were getting ready to fly.
The last few nights I have seen the adults taking in up to 11 voles and mice each night, mostly between midnight and 2.00am.
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Post by Dandelion on 29th June 2020, 12:10 pm

That's exciting Ploshkin - hope you can see them flying

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by FloBear on 29th June 2020, 7:40 pm

Oh wow! Your very own Barn Owl babies. I am suitably envious. These trail cameras are remarkable things, aren't they?
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Post by Dandelion on 12th August 2020, 5:04 pm

We now have three ex-commmercial hens (I can't remember if I mentioned this in another thread.) That in itself is another story, but they have arrived badly pecked and a bit featherless, but also (understandably) not very happy about being handled. To get them sprayed with anti-pecking spray I have been taking them out of the nest at night while they are sleepy. And while Mr D and I were creeping around the garden at night by the light of a torch, we saw our resident hedgehog! We haven't seen it out and about - we discovered it asleep in its nest in the spring but didn't know if being disturbed had had a detrimental effect. But there it was, snuffling around by the hens' cage! We have now put out a bowl of water for it at night.

................................................................................................................................
The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Ploshkin on 12th August 2020, 6:56 pm

That's lovely Dandelion, I haven't seen a hedgehog at all this year though my neighbour has a regular visitor so it's nice to know they're around.

I've been meaning to post these for ages. My 4 barn owl babies successfully fledged and I really miss them now as I had been following their every noise and movement for 5 months. They're still around, I hear the young ones screeching in the trees and there's plenty of new poo in the shed every morning but they are no longer consistent in their behaviour and it's pot luck if I catch them on camera.

Here are 3 video clips from a couple of weeks ago.
They are 60 seconds long but the first one freezes at 30 seconds - I think the battery was low

Feeding babies
Interesting head stuff
Not quite brave enough to flfy
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Post by FloBear on 12th August 2020, 9:44 pm

They're terrific bits of footage. The head-bobbing is hilarious!
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