January 13th 2014


ANIMALS 004Two lovely things in the night- I heard the England Women’s cricket team win their Ashes Test Match at the WACA, Perth despite gruelling temperatures of over 40c! And I heard the local Tawny Owls calling their duet of the female’s ‘kew-wick’ with the males response ‘hooo’. Like most of us, I was brought up to think this was just one owl-call, as Shakespeare writes in Love’s Labour’s Lost: ‘Then nightly sings the staring owl, Tu-Whit, Tu-who, a merry note’. Staring yes, but hardly merry! Tawny Owls usually pair for life, from the age of one and keep to the same territory year on year so these must be our local residents. Today several squabbling squirrels have been fighting for food- one frequently sending the others into full flight! In the 60’s in Sussex we watched the beautiful and numerous red squirrels feeding on the hazel bushes and a friend, a farmer’s son got a bounty, which I remember as 6 old pence for every tail of every shot grey squirrel he could produce.Now the reds hang on to a few edges of Briitain and the greys are ubiquitous, entertaining and yet causing much IMG_4860damage in the garden.

Conditions: Sun and blue sky all morning.

Temperature: Max 5 – Min 2

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