NATURE

 Welsh Black buddies

Jo Jones

And also from Jo so very amorous pheasant buddies – or are they lining up for a territorial contest?

Hawthorn – May blossom

Following the wonderful display of blackthorn featured last month, we now have an equally splendid display of hawthorn – or may as it is known, starting as it does in that month.  The History page looks at its historic and magical background.  Here are a couple more of your pictures – from Caro (left) and Ian.  As you can see here, and from our hedges, Hawthorn comes in white and pink – sometimes on the same tree – no wonder our ancestors thought it was magical!

 

Seven ways to go wild (and help your health)

A new book out by Lucy McRobert tells us just this – she encourages families to head outdoors. Here are some of her ideas:

  1. Find a rainbow.
  2. Hear a buzzard mew.
  3. Do a two minute beach clean – that is a good one for round here!
  4. Create a hedgehog highway – and Gerrit Forrester has done just that:

    Can you spot it?  His interest in hedgehogs started last year when he found one in his neighbour’s garden that was obviously poorly and undernourished.  He provided it with a hedgehog house, stocked with straw and provided food and water.  And here it is, out of hibernation for the summer, foraging in his garden.
    Well done Gerrit!
  5. Tread carefully around toads and toadlets which will be leaving their homes en masse soon.
  6. Follow a bumble bee as it buzzes around your garden; map which flowers are their favourites and how far they travel to find them.  See the sidebar for honeybees that can grasp the concept of numbers!
  7. Bioblitz your garden: This is when someone intensively surveys an area over a short time (say an hour), to see how many species live there (see also the Countryfile survey noted in the sidebar).

Some of your nature photographs

First we have a butterfly spotted by Gerrit sheltering from the wind near the Lookout, and also from him, a black headed gull he found in the New Forrest (not very near Rhoscolyn or the sea!):

Gerrit Forrester  Black headed gull - Gerrit Forrester

And from Caro, young ravens ready to fledge, and fledged: