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in Wildlife gardening
Following on from the devastating floods in southern England and the huge amount of misery caused to the people living there I can but wonder at what devastation is being caused to wildlife
Last year(2013)was one of the few in recent times that the wildlife got a fighting chance to recover a bit but only after a very late spring
One hopes, with the North not having it so bad that the majority of wildlife (birds at least) have been able to relocate slightly to continue their recovery.
The burrowing mammals/ small rodents will be having a tough time of it on the Levels, and when they do badly so do the owls and the birds of prey
Hibernating hedgehogs won't have stood much of a chance
and lots of butterfly/moth chrysalises are in the ground
Personally I am not worried.
We have seen a very mild winter so far. There is still plenty of natural food to be had.
Rodents will relocate their burrows readily in wet weather, many have extensive systems and are built specifically for this purpose.
The exceptional summer last year was a mast year when nature over produce's much of the naturally available feed.
Much of our wildlife will have taken advantage of this.
Birds produced several broods, rodents produced numerous young and other wildlife recovered quickly after the cold spring, including the insect population.
Wildlife had a good year last year in general. This years extreme conditions is I believe natures way of reducing last years over production.
We as humans are relative newcomers, nature was here before us, and will still be here if and when we disappear.
We must continue to do what we can to help our wildlife, of that there is no doubt, however nature is tougher than we are.
There will always be fluctuations in populations, some if not most, in any reduction is due to human influences.
If we keep our influences to the minimum, nature will look after itself.
It always has and will continue to do so. We as humans just need to our part and with consideration.
Much of what we hold dear as gardeners and human beings is nature's way of making us feel better.
If we treat nature with the respect that it deserves, we will continue to enjoy it's bounty.
Isn't nature wonderful. She finds her own way no matter how we try to help her or meddle with what she is doing. I do think she is having a hard time of it at the moment as there is more ignorance and meddling than help for her.
It all comes down to the same species unfortunately.
What can i say. (this is not a rant, just true. Unfortunately)
I reckon it'll take a very long time for things to get back to what was "normal" where the land has been submerged for as long as it has been this time round. Obviously we can see for ourselves those creatures which are mobile and probably will have survived - rodents, birds and so on - but what won't have survived are the insect larvae & worms etc.,and things we can't see, as well as those creatures which hibernate - someone else "upthread" mentioned hedgehogs, I think.
Another problem - which I don't think people have mentioned - is the fact that there willl undoubtedly be pollution due to sewage systems ceasing to function properly, and the possibillity that there may well be pollution from oil fuel domestic heating systems and underground fuel storage tanks. Those rural areas which have suffered badly are probably those which don't have mains services other than electicity and water - and even the water systems may well be badly affected.
The water table overall is so high now that large trees are more likely than ever to be blown over in high winds - their roots being unable to hold due to the soft ground. This is something we've seen round here, even though we're not at risk from flooding and the soil is relatively light/sandy.
There's every chance that all of us will find our buildings insurance premiums rising too - the insurance companies will get their money back somehow, just as they have done by increasing motor insurance costs as a result of the rising number of claims for whiplash injuries........... Property prices will fall in those areas which have been affected by the floods, and some people will undoubtedly find themselves in what's called a "negative equity" situation now - even if they could find a buyer if and when they have to sell their home.
It seems to me that there won't be many creatures or businesses which won't suffer long-term from the affects of the floods - maybe the only ones who'll do well are people who have a carpet shop!
a lot of drowned animals I suspect as there is nowhere for them to go .The rats are going into peoples homes looking for dry spots and food.The swans and birds seem to be o.k but how much damage is really done will show when the floods subside.