Tuesday, 9 December 2014

New Day

The garden was white and the sky was stunning so I was out in my dressing gown and slippers first thing! The light was changing so quickly ... one minute the sky was orange ....
then pink ...
.... all within a few minutes.
It is very cold out there so I didn't stay long!
The Goldfinches were obviously hungry as they ignored me. 
Feeding frenzy going on now ... Woodpigeons, Collard Doves, Dunnocks and Chaffinches all over the lawn and Blue Tits, Great Tits, House Sparrows and Greenfinches all over the feeders.  We are going to purchase a bird table today to give the robins a bit of a chance.
We have had a Blackcap visiting the garden for the last few days so when we went to the BTO conference this weekend I was pleased to see one of the talks was about this little visitor.  The BTO scientists have discovered that our summer Blackcaps are not the same birds as our winter ones.  Our summer birds still migrate south; our winter Blackcaps are in fact coming here from Germany! Once Spring arrives they go back there to breed.

The conference was brilliant and full of food for thought.  By the morning coffee break (after hearing from people working on how wind farms are affecting wildlife; how climate affects birds and how birds are coping with urbanisation) I was not feeling as depressed as you might think ... these people were actually making a difference and I felt I wanted to be part of that process.

Since I have been home I have contacted the council about a small piece of land at the top of the lane.  It has been planted with shrubs that the council chops back every so often (then dumps the clippings in a huge pile in the middle ... I know the wildlife need a bit of shelter but this pile has been large enough for quite some time now!).  Bits of rubbish have been dumped there; brambles are taking over and the ground is covered in ivy.  It has the potential of being a nice green space for the neighbourhood ... a few English Bluebells and Snowdrops .... a couple of bird boxes and a feeding station ... I've already positioned the bench in my mind's eye!  Unfortunately the council do not own the land so they can't give me permission to do anything.  I am now in contact with the Highways Department as they arte in charge of road verges.  I await their reply before I go into Guerrilla Gardening mode.

Anyway, we had a wonderful time at the conference listening to interesting people of all ages, meeting friends and having dinner with Chris Packham!!  We were with the BTO media team so he sat at our table.  I didn't do any of the 'star struck fan' stuff ,,, no photos or "please sign this napkin"!
So a very memorable conference.

The BTO Garden Birdwatch Pack would make a good Christmas present if you want to encourage a young person to take an interest in nature,

She was up early too ....


  1. Brrrr. Kudos to you for going outside to get those pictures! The BTO conference sounds really good too.

  2. Outside in a dressing gown brrrr. Isn't sky like that on a morning a sign of bad weather?

    Good luck with your guerilla gardening,

  3. Lovely morning colours and so pretty all those goldfinches on your birdfeeder. I really do love this kind of frosty cold and bright mornings, but here often during the day it's changing in wet and gloomy.

  4. Great photos of the frost and the sunrise! You are brave! I'm always a little groggy in the morning, but you've inspired me to get out there and try to get some morning shots. I'm glad to hear you have so many birds visiting!