Saturday, 1 January 2022

New Year Visitors of the Woodpecker Kind


What an age it seems since I last posted on this blog. There have been various reasons (largely Christmas plans and festivities); but here I am, emerging from a kind of hibernation and finding myself two days into the New Year! 

We have been been keeping a sharp eye on our coconut feeders as a Sparrowhawk swooped right down a few weeks ago, and might well have ended up inside if our sliding doors had been open at the time. There were no casualties on that occasion, but the raptor came surprisingly close to the glass. Perhaps she noticed the butterfly stickers at the eleventh hour, which are supposed to warn birds to keep away from the window pane.

Since that hair-raising moment, we have had scores of Blue tits, good numbers of Great tits and Long-tailed tits. We have also had regular visits from a female Great Spotted Woodpecker, the one in the photo above. Well, yesterday we suddenly realised that the bird we were watching had a red nape. This means we have also have a male in our neck of the woods. Will there be young ones later on? 


We were delighted to look out on 16 November, such a long time ago now, and find this Redwing enjoying the berries. We occasionally see these beautiful winter migrants in the garden. It is always a joy when we do. 


The October image above has to be one of our garden favourites for 2021. We love the whiskers, the beady eyes and those enormous ears! I have a hunch the sandy-coloured patches of fur probably make this a Field or Wood Mouse. 

And by the way, we checked on the Wasp-spider egg-sac just outside the glass door. It has survived the winter so far.

I look forward to finding new species in our wild garden this year. I wonder who will be first on the 2022 list ... Sadly we had no hedgehogs to report last year. When we first moved here to our Suffolk garden a decade ago, we had fairly frequent sightings, sometimes of a mother with young in tow. Let's hope we can somehow buck the current downward trend.



Wilma said...

Good to see another post from you, Caroline. The mouse is very photogenic! I can't imagine what a mess and trauma it would if that hawk had gained entry to your house.
BTW - I have started blogging again after almost 3 years away from it. Hoping to make it a habit again. Happy New Year to you!


Lowcarb team member said...

Lovely to see this post from you.
Happy New Year Wishes.

All the best Jan

Caroline Gill said...

Wilma and Jan, thank you for your kind comments as we plunge deeper into 2022. Wilma, I enjoyed visiting your blog (I love your yellow kayak!) ... but seem unable to post a comment there ... perhaps this is by subscription?

Crafty Green Poet said...

That's a lovely photo of the great spotted woodpecker, Caroline! The redwing too, we had a flock of redwings flying around our neighbourhood yesterday, such lovely birds to watch.