Issue 2

Nature Watch: Autumn              schmetterling-64


Hello readers! Well, I´m back on Nature Watch after a short illness; but that didn´t stop me from being inspired by the beauty of the natural world around me.

While I was at Princess of Wales, I was woken up at 4.00 in the morning by the loud fluty notes of a blackbird singing in a Rowan tree right outside my window. Some patients were annoyed, but I was thrilled to be so near to my favourite bird - and he made me feel so ALIVE! I see myself as a blackbird and I try to express myself in the same vibrant, eloquent way as I travel through life

I tend not to see so many birds in the garden in the summer because there is more cover and because some birds spend more time elsewhere. We see some of the ground feeders often; such as the ubiquitous jackdaws, blackbirds, thrushes, pigeons, collared doves, the shy dunnock , but I haven´t seen so much of the chaffinches, sparrows, tits, robins and wagtails; although I have seen them in the fields and trees that surround the garden. There has been plenty of food for the birds around here; it seems to have been a good year for insects and seeds.

I like to sit and meditate in the garden at about 7 o´clock in the morning. I keep so still that birds and animals come very close and the resident rabbit often passes without noticing me.

I also like to watch the thrushes feeding on the lawn where they find juicy titbits in the dew or after rain. They pick up slugs in their beaks and rub them against the floor in a sideways motion for some time, presumably to get rid of the slime which may be toxic.

They also like fruit and are often seen in Wyndham garden pecking at windfalls. I don´t think they damage fruit on the trees. The young jackdaws peck the growing apples out of inexperience or curiosity. They peck once and find that they don´t like unripe apples; but then the damage is done.

Green and greater – spotted woodpeckers have been seen pecking at the ailing sycamore in Ffaldau garden, covering the path with woodchips. The day is often punctuated by the piercing call of the green woodpecker which earns it the colloquial name of "Yaffle".

One beautiful August afternoon, I heard a tapping sound just above me as I dozed under a chestnut tree. I felt debris falling on my head and I looked up to see the beautiful peach-coloured belly and blue-grey wings of a nuthatch. I kept still until he flew away.

Lately, I have been hearing my favourite sound of Autumn, the "Tic Tic" call of the robins and their sad, sweet song that heralds in the days of mellow fruitfulness . That´s all for this Autumn issue see you at Christmas!