I'm sat here at my computrer trying to tpye but all the time my eyes are being distratced by the comnigs and gonigs of the pair of sparrwos outside my widnow. (Right, concentrate Adrian! Eyes back on the keyboard).
The female sparrow has just come in with a big green caterpillar, while the male seems to be specialising in beakfuls of blackfly, probably off my broad beans. (Go for it, boy - have as many as you want!).
It made me think about how important it is to give yourself a pat on the back for anything you have done in the garden over the last few months to help give nature a home. Now is the time to take a moment (indeed, as many moments as you like) to just enjoy it, revel in it, celebrate it.
Buoyed by this thought, I've just taken been to grab a snapshot of some of the wildlife happenings in my garden. Don't worry - I'm not after praise; what I'd love is if it prompts you to think of all the great stuff you've achieved.
So my eye was drawn to my Red Campion, all grown from seed, which is now forming swathes of colour in more shady areas where previously there was none. It is so easy to grow and it is one of our most glorious native flowers.
Then there is my Bird'sfoot Trefoil which again I've grown from seed and now in its second year is blooming like crazy. I planted it primarily for the caterpillars of Common Blue butterflies, but it is such a sure-fire winner with all sorts of bee species. Here today there were Common Carder Bees...
...and Red-tailed Bumblebees...
I found brand new life in the pond - this just-emerged gossamer damselfly, so fresh out of its nymphal case (the exuvia), is still to flush with colour, but is a Large Red Damselfly.
And there are new projects from this winter that are just starting to settle in, such as the Boat Garden (I found the boat buried in the garden, and thought I ought to use it somehow!).
It may not look much yet, but those little smudges of green you can see are native plants I collected as seed on our glorious beaches over the last two years, such as this Sea Kale which is already blooming and providing nectar:
The thing is that there are so many of us doing little things to help wildlife in our gardens, on our balconies and in our local greenspace that it adds up to a pretty monumental difference for wildlife. One pair of sparrows may seem nothing, but combined with all of your pairs of sparrows, in combination we are giving the species a fighting chance. That's the value of us all doing our bit.
Hi Firecrest. It is possible, but Frogs can still breed successfully in quite shady ponds, so the newts may be the cause. I've heard so many examples of ponds which are quickly colonised by Frogs to start with, but over time the newt population builds up, they eat the spawn and tadpoles, and the Frog numbers decline. I suspect that Common Frogs are most naturally a coloniser of new ponds, which once upon a time would have sprung up in all sorts of places, but it is no more than a theory. However, your area may have been struck by one of the ranaviruses that can devastate Frog populations in places, but again no more than a theory I'm afraid. Interestingly, the Emperor Dragonfly is an example of a pond creature which takes readily to new ponds, but populations then tend to wane as the pond matures, so there is definitely something about how a pond eccosystem changes as it matures and vegetates.
Your garden looks great. I cannot believe you dug up a boat! Of course you must do something with it. I have had a wildlife pond for about 20 years now, we dug it when we first moved in. It used to attract frogs but in recent years nothing....no tadpoles again. We are very rural with a field to the East which had lots of young trees right next to our garden fence. Over the years they have grown very quickly and our pond does not get the sun it used to. There are newts and loads and loads of snails. Do you think it is the lack of sunlight that has stopped the frogs coming?
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