This past week has brought some much warmer days again across Kent although it is cooler today and we’ve had some welcome rain overnight.
Bees have been busy in the garden on various flowers taking advantage of the fine weather and my photograph this week shows a couple of honeybees on a sedum, also known as an ice plant, enjoying the nectar of this beautiful autumn flower. I’ve also seen a number of cabbage white butterflies, bumblebees and hoverflies on other plants as well.
Squirrel activity continues and I don’t know if the two who are coming to the garden are from the same family group, but they seem to often arrive together, run along the fence but are not obviously chasing one another, en route to the cobnut tree which is almost devoid of nuts now. One of them certainly enjoys some peanuts usually about 6:30 in the evening before disappearing from the garden for the day. I’ve not actually sighted the fox this week but it has been leaving evidence of its visit out in the garden. Bird activity has remained quite high with the blackbirds enjoying mealworms, suet pellets and any chopped meat that I put out by the bird table. One or two crows have been arriving early and late in the day and also a pair of jackdaws. I think there must’ve been a big group of them up in a neighbouring tree a couple of afternoons ago, or perhaps crows, as there was an awful lot of cackling going on.
I’ve seen at least one wood pigeon and a couple of collared doves during the week, coming late when most of the other birds have left for the day to enjoy a quiet meal. There is a much bigger group of starlings coming again at the moment and they are following the routine of arriving late afternoon and then assembling in the top of a large conifer before flying off for the day. On the sunny days that have also been enjoying a bath in the water tray facilities and there were five or six enjoying their ablutions together the other afternoon. They then retired to one of the trees to dry off.
The feral pigeons have been coming too, but again this week numbers are still lower than in the past, but my regular predominantly white pigeons have been coming at various times. I think the original white bird has now passed on the peanut feeder opening skills to at least one of the others in the group. Another large bird to visit the garden again briefly was a sparrowhawk which meant that the other birds scrambled for cover or flew off. It sat in my cobnut tree for a short time and then disappeared. Finally yesterday four magpies landed in my wild cherry tree, the biggest group for a long time.