Nick’s lockdown diary: Daily exercise and fledgling birds
The beautiful weather continues in the South East of England, and I can’t help wondering how different “lockdown” might have been had the weather been cold and miserable.
At least I can continue with my daily exercise enjoying the spring sunshine.
On Saturday, I upped the level of that exercise, and instead of walking my usual four-mile route, I combined running and walking together.
I ran about half the route by starting at one point, identifying a tree about 100 metres ahead and running to it, then walking to get my breath back and so on and so on.
Surprisingly it wasn’t too tricky although as I write this, I appear to have strains in one calf muscle and one side of my stomach!! I may have to wait a couple of days before I do it again.
The garden is looking lovely, and Andy and I, motivated by the large number of people we witnessed picnicking as we went on our recent bike ride, decided to have one ourselves on the back garden lawn.
The bird and insect life continues to be remarkable. I have increased my butterfly list again, this time a Meadow Brown, so that’s 12 out of the 58/59 UK species.
I was called into the garden by Andy yesterday evening because she could hear a bird but couldn’t spot what it was.
As we stood quietly watching four baby wrens fledged from a nest we didn’t even know was there and having orientated themselves on the roof flew off to their new lives.
These tiny and secretive birds, apart from when they machine gun out their song which belies their size, have the lovely name Troglodytes, Troglodytes, literally “Cave Dwellers.”
So Robins, Blue Tits, Dunnock and Wrens have all nested and fledged in the garden.
We are also aware of the Blackbirds nesting behind the garden shed, and the Wood Pigeons have now found a tree to nest in and raise their young, right under a street light and by the busy road, so far so good for them.
I am quite poor at photography, but Steve Hancock, a client and local man is really very good, and he has said I could publish these photos of the baby Blue Tits who fledged in his garden.
Blue Tits nest just once a year and tend to have large broods because typically only one adult and one chick make it through to the next breeding season.
And the excellent news for me this week is that football starts again soon with Premiership matches available to watch free on TV.
Normality is starting to return, whatever normality means!