Dutiful Mr. B.

Long time no write!! Feeling inspired by Mr. B.

We have a very tame/brave male blackbird who almost taps on the window when the tray is empty. He has already raised one family this year. He brought a youngster down to feed. The youngster is now reasonably independent. Father blackbird (A.K.A. Mr. B) is now collecting for another brood. He’s a very hardworking parent! We never see Mrs. B. Long may he live!

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Of Fog, Dew and Spider’s Webs!

image When I looked out of the window at 6:30 this morning a thick blanket of fog was upon us.

By about 8:30 it had lifted, but the entire garden was covered in these amazing spiders’ webs, all catching the dazzling morning sunlight!


A most beautiful autumn morning!

Pyracantha webs

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Hedgehog video trial!

Hello folks!

I have broken into the world of YouTube as this is the only way I know to get videos from the naturecam  onto this blog.  It appears to work OK, but I don’t like the other pics that come up at the end! Don’t know how to get rid of them, or if I even can. At the moment I’m just happy to be able to share this little snippet with you!

They are eating mealworm, their absolute favourite. They might eat “Spike’s Semi-moist dinner” at a push but really mealworm is what they want. I always put big bowls of water out nearby and they do drink quite a lot.

Please also note the massive slug also sharing the mealworm. That thing about hedgehogs eating slugs is a myth!

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Whose mealworm is it anyway?

Mealworms are a very popular food for all your garden critters. Obviously the hedgehogs love them. The wood mice can’t resist them. My garden is now mobbed by starlings trying to get a look in. My friendly blackbird almost knocks on the back door for me to put more out and the sparrows are like blackbird groupies! When the blackbird sits on top of the greenhouse making his “Where’s my mealworm?” chirp, the sparrows hear it and come and sit by his side! But I was most surprised to catch Barney (or it might be Patchy) tucking in the other evening! But another prickly critter thought it was his! The cat checked it out but prudently left the hog to it! I had thought that if I put the mealworm out once night had fallen, it wouldn’t get gobbled up before the hedgehog turned up. Wrong again it seems so I dug out the green dome from wherever I had stashed it when I had thought ‘my’ hogs had died a horrible death (by slug pellets or car squash). And there we have it! (As an aside, the dark  patch on the ground at the front entrance is where the hog had a pee as it entered the dome. I know this because it was not there on previous shots. Now, what do you make  of that?

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Last year I bought a green ‘pet dome’ with the idea that if I put hedgehog food inside, other critters would not be able to eat it.

This worked well last year and earlier on this year, but now the hoggies have stopped visiting, so others have discovered an easy meal!

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STARLINGS!!!  The mobsters! Queuing, squabbling, filling there beaks and coming back for more! It has to be said that they do have some beautiful colours and of course they are probably feeding families now, but they wolf it down in seconds!

At night we have wood mice coming to feast!


Then the inevitable nosy neighbour!

We do have a couple of very friendly blackbirds who are much more dignified than starlings. They delicately pick up a single mealworm and swallow before selecting their next worm. Their problem is they are too slow and scared off by the mobbing starlings. They are not scared of me whereas the starlings are, so as long as I stand all day at the feeding station the blackbirds can get their fill!

Yeah …. right!!!

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Hedgehogs Awake!

I was pleased and relieved to discover that at least one hedgehog is back and looking good.

The last sighting I had was on October 15th last year and that seemed far too early for hibernation. At the time I had 2 or 3 visiting nightly and they all stopped coming at the same time so I wondered if a disaster had occured.

So happy day when once again they are feeding their prickly little faces on dried mealworm!


Happy Spring everyone!

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My garden is springing!

My garden has burst into activity. The hedgehogs and mice are out. The goldfinches are making a nest in the bamboo near the back door and a pair of blackbirds are feeding themselves up on dried mealworms.

It’s been an unusual spring so far. We’ve seen more crows nearby than I’ve ever seen here. We were visited by a pair of collared doves. Then the goldfinches building a nest just feet from the back door.

On reflection, this may all be due to the development of most of the open spaces into housing. Wildlife that previously went unnoticed is popping up in our gardens.

I started putting the naturecam out about a week ago and got hedgehog pictures from the off. My results are a bit inconsistent – probably need new batteries! I did trace one hoggie back to another pile of Alfie’s leaves. Then we were hearing a coughing noise from the leaves during the day ….. Or was it huffing. Hedgehogs make a huffing sound -something to do with territory! I wasn’t sure if my hedgie was coughing or huffing so I called in the experts. A caring lady from Corfe Mullen came and took hedgie away with the intention of a visit to the vet and antibiotics if necessary. Phew! Responibility successfully passed on to another!

I’ve since caught another hog coming to eat the dried mealworms at night. Perhaps hog number 1 was huffing after all!

Last nights camera results showed this:image

So the springing garden is not really ours at the moment. We are only there to fill the feeders and otherwise keep a low profile! We’re off for a couple of days now so they can enjoy in peace – as long as next door’s cat doesn’t cause any bother!

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