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June Top Trumps. Pack you bird books and binoculars...

(108 Posts)
SaggyCeratops Thu 31-May-12 23:56:09

I'll start. Today, I saw a green woodpecker, and got really close to a little owl. I came into close proximity to about a million mosquitoes, and have just removed a wood louse from the bathtub! confused

violetwellies Fri 01-Jun-12 08:50:47

Ceratops? Saggy are you extinct?

GrimmaTheNome Fri 01-Jun-12 08:56:01

Thanks for starting smile even if those were May spots
I'd love to see a little owl in the wild.

I don't expect to see much today, work and packing - then I'll be away for a week. Narrowboat on the oxford canal, hopeful of bird life there (must remember to take book and binoculars). There was a Great Outdoors thread a while back about 'best places to see wildlife' or suchlike, and I think I came to the conclusion that 'from a boat' was a good general rule (be it canoe, badly sailed dinghy, boat trips in places like anglesey and cornwall, and Norfolk Broads 'tub')

barbarianoftheuniverse Fri 01-Jun-12 10:43:44

Ten million greenflies!
Swifts and goldfinches.

First wild roses out around here.

iseenodust Fri 01-Jun-12 11:02:33

Not a good start. Just seen a black ladybird with four red spots in the garden - they're the 'bad' variety aren't they?

ExitPursuedByABear Fri 01-Jun-12 11:08:00

I used to see lots of little owls lurking in trees when I rode my horse in the summer evenings.

Off to Anglesey tomorrow so hoping for oyster catchers and seals, at the very least.

Incaminka Fri 01-Jun-12 11:14:19

I'm very lucky with our garden. 5am this morning, muntjac and fox!
Not so lucky re fox -he's had 6 of my hens. I am getting a trap to catch and rehome him.
We also have a green woodpecker but not seen him today. Have seen blue tits, great tits, kestrel, robin, blackbirds, songthrush.

GrimmaTheNome Fri 01-Jun-12 11:27:08

Ooh, I should think there's loads of birds on and around Anglesey at the moment - its the only place I've seen puffins (from the aptly named 'Puffin Cruises' and choughs (at South Stack))

iseenodust Fri 01-Jun-12 12:22:13

Seriously needs a bigger garden. I fancy at babbling brook at the bottom.

GrimmaTheNome Fri 01-Jun-12 13:17:53

A brook would be fab, but even a small pond is pretty good. I went out at lunchtime and watched some very active water snails including a nice chunky ramshorn. We have a little 'barrel pond' on the patio - this is great for attracting birds near to the house to drink and bathe.

ExitPursuedByABear Fri 01-Jun-12 13:26:24

I saw Puffins and choughs on Skomer.

Too many walking issues to get to South Stack, but the RSPB place on the cliff top has telescopes.


Barrel pond - I have always fancied one of those - saw a programme once where someone grew a water lily in a barrel pond. How big is yours Grimma? Is it difficult to keep healthy?

GrimmaTheNome Fri 01-Jun-12 13:32:36

Roughly a foot deep and 14" diameter - too small for a water lily but its got a couple of spiky plants, some aerating floaty stuff and a few small water soldier offsets from the ones in the proper pond. It needs topping up in summer esp as the dog also uses it as a water bowl- (collect rainwater, or fill a bucket and leave 3 days to dechlorinate)and I have to remove blanket weed by hand (not exactly big enough for a barley bale!). But because its small its easily manageable. The birds love it. smile

iseenodust Fri 01-Jun-12 14:19:12

Barrel pond - need to learn more. thanks Grimma

GrimmaTheNome Fri 01-Jun-12 17:46:35

My pleasure smile. No garden is too small for a barrel pond. You need plants in it in pots which come just below the water level (on a halfbrick if needbe), topped with gravel, for the birds to stand on.

OneHandFlapping Fri 01-Jun-12 17:51:26

I came on to say I'd seen a little owl - which was very exciting, only to find every bugger's already seen one!

Selks Fri 01-Jun-12 20:16:53

Lots and lots of house martens....not rare or wow factor as such, but I'm just very pleased to see them as they have been absent here for two years previously.

violetwellies Fri 01-Jun-12 20:53:56

Edmerflower out, and various shades of hawthorn from a deep pink (guessing Pauls Scarlet ) to a gorgeous cream with edges blushed pink. All hedgerow trees so not wild, but very pleasant smile

FryingNemo Fri 01-Jun-12 20:57:10

Pied woodpeckers and lots of baby blue tits. I hope these ones don't end up in a cat like last year's ones.

I love house martens too. When we bought our house there were four nests along the eaves but when we moved in they were gone. I asked the previous owner what had happened and she said, "We knocked them off for you." I was so upset.

Selks Fri 01-Jun-12 21:28:18

Also loving all the wonderful hawthorn blossom and billowing cow parsley at the's beautiful.

FryingNemo...that's awful angry sad

chixinthestix Fri 01-Jun-12 22:14:50

Hmm barrel pond sounds good and so much more MN than my washing up bowl pond.....

However our resident hen blackbird has her daily bath in the dog's water bowl on the back doorstep so yes, any bit of water will bring the wildlife in grin

GrimmaTheNome Fri 01-Jun-12 22:24:29

My 'barrel' is actually plastic - anything the right size from a garden centre or hardware store that hasn't been pre-drilled will do. As I mentioned, ny dog thinks it is his water bowl (he's a dachshund, perfect height for him to drink without lowering his head grin). Why do dogs always prefer 'outdoors' water with bits in it?

chixinthestix Fri 01-Jun-12 22:31:33

I really want one! The washing up bowl dries up too quickly and is too small for snails and proper pond plants, although the ragged robin in the stone sink/bog garden is looking v good atm.

You are completely right there Grimma, stixdog has perfectly good fresh water indoors but waits by the back door every evening to be let out for a drink. I think he likes the blackbird detritus.

violetwellies Sat 02-Jun-12 16:19:44

FryingNemo they'd have lost the sale if that had been me...

FryingNemo Sun 03-Jun-12 18:17:23

Violetwellies - I was devastated. I could not believe it. My only consolation was that it was August and the fledglings would have been long gone by then (hopefully).

No wildlife spots today - it has been raining horizontally most of the day.

violetwellies Sun 03-Jun-12 20:36:04

Yesterday a beautiful gossamer web, thick with midges got to love that spider, today a pretty blue flower that I don't know the name of ....yet smile

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