A full year of reporting on the 800 yards of 'mac - the 1/2 mile country road that I have driven on, run on, walked on, crawled on and lay on, hundreds of times in the past six years now.
There's not a lot to say this month other than so far, October has been a wet, warm, windy month (more than usual). I drove my French(ish) sister along the 800 yards earlier in the month to show her the barn owl (which is still there in its tree) but all we saw was a lovely tawny owl instead. Finally, the council have not yet contacted me about my concerns regarding the SANG proposal alongside "my" 800 yards of 'mac.
OK grapple fans.
Thanks for continuing to read this weird series of blogs (which I thought I'd have far more time to put down on paper (so to speak) when I started writing about these 800 yards of tarmacadam which are so close to my heart, a year ago now.
We've come full circle and whilst we started this blog a year ago now with talk of fieldfares alongside the 'mac, as of yet, even though I've heard the fieldfares' cousins, the redwing, I've not YET heard or seen fieldfares on the 800 yards. They'll only be a fortnight or so away now.
The video below I shot today whilst driving along the 800 yards and I'll leave you with that and a list of descriptive links to ALL my "800 yards of 'mac" posts over the last 12 months.
Thanks for dropping by.
Nov 16 - Fieldfares, redwing, hawthorn berries, stupendous yellow leaves
Dec 16 – Male barn owl back in tree, chocolate-coloured buzzard, rabbits, jackdaw colony, all leaves (bar oak) down
Jan 17 – Little owl in oak tree. Barn owl still in its tree.
Feb 17 – Little owl gone, TWO barn owls courting, catkins bullfinches, a fox in the sheep field.
Mar 17 – Fieldfares gone and redwing about to go, bullfinches, larks, red-legged partridge, roe deer.
Apr 17 – very dry but roadside flowers explode (mouse ear, bluebells, wood anemones and celandines), blackthorn blossom, trees starting to leaf, barn owl, kestrels nesting, roe deer, buzzard feeding and pheasant (video), honeybee tree, toads moving
May 17 – Brambles and nettles, hawthorn blossom, rush of leaves, swallows, martins and swifts arrive, pied wagtails, bullfinches, nuthatches, song thrushes, goldcrests, goldfinches, blue tits nesting. No barn owls nesting. Rabbits, honeybees, tree bumblebees.
Jun 17 – Heatwave, sileage production, umbellifers, horseshoe vetches, marsh mallow flowers, golden-ringed dragonfly, drinker moth caterpillar, linnets, whitethroats, disappearance of female kestrel (assume sitting on eggs), little owl, bone-breaking crow.
Jul 17 – Heatwave breaks and summer ends when schools close. Flowers peak with St.John’s Wort, vetches (both purple and yellow horseshoe), umbellifers all topped with cardinal beetles of course, mallow (both white and lavender coloured), thistles (sow, creeping and spear) and ox eye daisies, swifts disappear at end of month leaving the swallows and martins on their own. Strange disappearance of all owls and kestrels?
Aug 17 – Rain all month. Rots the wheat in the field (ruins harvest) but turns rest of countryside a rich green – bit strange for the heat of the summer?!
Sep 17 – Other than the wheat, nature’s harvest is ON – with big nettles and marsh woundwort (it’s been that wet!) hips, haws, sloes, blackberries, honeysuckle and acorns. Hobby filling up before migration attacks martins over 800 yards, SANG notice put on 800 yards gate – I contact council with my concerns. Barn owl returns to its tree.
Oct 17 – Nothing to add other than it’s been a warm, wet, windy month with a lot of the leaves down already. Took one of my sisters to see the barn owl (as it returned last month and is still there) but all we saw was a tawny instead and as yet the council haven’t contacted me regarding the SANG proposal alongside the 800 yards.