Blue Flower

Fred and Andrew have taken some good pictures of Kingfishers which are nesting in the river bank upstream, including several with a Roach in its beak. We often see a fleeting glimpse of Kingfishers flying along the river, but I have never managed to get any pictures.

Saturday 21/5/22 We connected the camera screen again to watch the nesting birds, the Jackdaw was feeding her chicks again, and the Great Tits were very active. We took down the pegboard display in the wagon to find a way through for a camera cable monitoring the bird feeders. I made a bracket, fitted the camera to it, ran a temporary cable and adjusted the angle to suit the feeder pole, then mounted the screen on a bracket in the corner of the wagon. The nest boxes, camera system and bird feeders are part of our Green Community Grant.

Eddie re-potted and watered the Lupins, they won’t flower this year as they are new plants, but when we plant some in the new wildflower meadow they should flower the following season.

We replaced the flickering light in the store room with one of the new strip lights. These were bought as the store room will become part of the display area and lights are also needed in our new shed.

We saw a Mayfly on the picnic bench and a Red and Black Froghopper landed on my sleeve. I strimmed in front of the habitat as it was overgrown. We watched a Chaffinch eating seed from the long feeder.

Thursday 26/5/22 I took the mower and cut the riverside track, Eddie and I cut the rest of the grass at the mill. Eddie strimmed all the grass edges but the three batteries all ran out, next time we will take the petrol strimmer. 

Dennis made two Hedgehog boxes from re-used wood, so we took them to the mill and put them under the railway wagon as Hedgehogs like a sheltered place such as under sheds. We need to put some dry leaves under there for them to build their nests, we may fit a camera in one of the boxes.

Eddie brought some tools from his Mum’s house which were used for various jobs today, also a pressure sprayer which will be useful for our environment friendly natural weedkiller which we use on historic brick areas. We tested the sprayer with river water and it works well.

I took a rotary file and enlarged the holes for wiring in the camera system so the plugs would fit through. I connected the camera pointing at the bird feeders which Eddie filled up, then connected the master cable to the screen, secured them both with cable clips, then we put the pegboard display panel back. We switched the system on and watched Great Tits and Goldfinches eating from the pole feeders. There are still seven Great Tit babies, they are much bigger now, one kept flying up and looking out of the hole in the nest box. The Jackdaws were less active but will probably be there for about two months. They usually only have two to three chicks and we hope to get a better view of them as they grow and move around the nest box.

Graham Bartlett                

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