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Latest posts by nutcutlet

ID a big bird

Posted: 25/11/2013 at 08:34

Thanks Dove

I think it's probably a female marsh harrier, 

I've been aware of it for years but thought it was a hen harrier, then thought it wasn't. 



Posted: 24/11/2013 at 22:48

Is 5C the same as 43F fidgetbones?

Grass doesn't grow below 43F, I learnt that at school.

For years it was filed as useless info but later refiled as useful

what the?

Posted: 24/11/2013 at 22:40

If you haven't paid you won't have ordered at all.

ID a big bird

Posted: 24/11/2013 at 22:35

Hi Joe

Hard to be completely sure but I'd say a little smaller than a buzzard. A very dark brown back/top view but with an overall blotchy effect on the underside of the wings, not in patches like the kite. Bulky looking when seen on the ground. Often flies very low to the ground. I've been seeing it or one of them, never more than one at a time, for years.

Grassless lawn

Posted: 24/11/2013 at 20:12

How big is the site, what's the soil like and how much sun does it get?

There's a lot of plants there with differing needs.

I can't immediately see the wildlife connection though any single flower may well provide for insects.

I'd spend the winter doing some research, see what will grow on your soil and aspect, pick out those that are good for wildlife if that's what you want, some will be, and plant in spring


Posted: 24/11/2013 at 20:04

Grass doesn't grow when it's very cold. If it doesn't grow the roots won't go into the soil, it will just sit there and become dislodged if it's played on..



Posted: 24/11/2013 at 15:44

Dove, re the Iris. Slugs and snails live amongst the leaves. Your hedgehog will love it

What I love about winter in the garden

Posted: 24/11/2013 at 14:40

I thought autumn was late til I looked at previous years' photos chicky. Golden field maples in late November appear regularly.

Looking out, it's autumn, lots of colour still. It feels more like winter when you get out there. The temperature isn't that low but it's drizzling on and off and a bit breezy.

What I love about winter in the garden

Posted: 24/11/2013 at 14:22

I shall have to go and check all the snowdrop sites.

It's only a few weeks to the winter solstice then the days get longer. By mid January I'm looking for (and finding) signs of spring. 

I spend a lot of winter garden time looking for signs of new growth. A garden is never truly dormant, though sometimes it all disappears under snow.  There's always a bud growing or the scent of sarcoccca, lonicera or viburnum. Then, when the snow melts, the snowdrops and aconites are ready, hellebores not far behind and it all starts again.

There's a bit of tree work to do first though. That's another thing I enjoy, a bit of pruning and shredding. OH on the chainsaw, me on the loppers and shredder. We keep warm pruning then we keep warm again later by the woodstove.


Sorbus hupehensis

Posted: 24/11/2013 at 14:07

That's an interesting point Berghill. Our bird of prey count increases yearly and things may change. We've always have kestrels and sparrow hawks but the kite and buzzard numbers are soaring. The little birds do OK with their feeders in the hedge and the hawthorns close to the house but it's a big dangerous world further out.


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