It has been a funny old year so far, with personal difficulties and changes taking up much of my time. I am attempting to split my spare time between hobbies and interests old and new, including wildflower surveys, gardening (still very new to this), astronomy, and others; some of these hobbies do have potential cross-overs, wildflowers and gardening obviously do, astronomy can be linked to these as well as they are both outdoor type of activities so having a good environment to do them in is important. A garden in the evenings is where the creatures of the night come out, including bats, owls, newts (easier to spot at night in a pond with a torch), hedgehogs, so it can be quite interesting sitting outside on a cool autumn or winter night gazing up at the stars.
Coming back to the present, it’s turning into an amazing year for fruits of all kinds – more blackberries and plums than I’ve seen for a long time, ripening rapidly in what must have been ideal conditions for them, although right now the weather has turned cooler with a bit of rain I’m confident we will see plenty of warm sunny days before the season is over.
The camera trap has been out in the garden in various locations, earlier it spotted a family of young pheasant chicks and their mother strolling by in a section of the garden that we let go to a wildflower meadow for a while; it was interesting to see paths appearing in the long grass that are not visible when it is kept short – I positioned the camera to watch one of these paths the other night, it captured a pheasant hen and also a bright-eyed hedgehog, very good to see them still visiting, if I manage to get a good capture I will try to post it here.
As for the rest of the season, I intend to complete a couple of wildflower surveys down some local road grass verges, but above all just get out and enjoy the sunshine.