Nature Notes #8

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Apologies- its a slightly belated #naturenotes this week- life got in the way once again last week but there’s still plenty to do and look out for around you…

5 things to do this week:

1. Get outside and make the most of the cold snap. I love the crisp beauty of cold winter days and there are some gorgeous sights to be had- frozen spiders webs, icy puddles and frosty plants.

2. Look out for unusual visitors to your bird table or garden. In cold spells, more birds are forced into towns and gardens to look for food so it’s possible you could see a redwing, fieldfare or even a brambling popping up in your garden.

3. Are there signs of bulbs around you? The narcissi that I planted back in September are now showing as little green shoots pushing through the earth in our garden and it makes me feel as though the garden is coming back to life after it’s winter slumber.

4. Have a look at the trees around you. Winter is a great time to appreciate the different shapes and structures of different types of trees, and I find that oak trees look particularly majestic without their leaves. I walk past the one above every morning on my way to the station and it never fails to cheer up my rushed commute.

5. Keep an eye or ear out for starling roosts as these noisy birds flock together in winter. You don’t need to go as extreme as to visit the Somerset Levels’ famous murmurations, as smaller flocks can be found closer to home. When doing the Big Garden Birdwatch from my local park this weekend, I counted over 50 starlings roosting together in the treetops and electricity pylon. Their chattering was incredible- starlings really do make the best noises!

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