Our very own Springwatch – Swallows

Swallow in flight

Swallow in flight

Swallow in flight (blurred)

Difficult to photograph! Click image to see blurred Swallow

The Swallows (Hirundo rustica) came back in early April, we have at least three pairs nesting in the farm buildings. They are a mesmerising site as they swoop around catching flying insects over the fields. They are about everyday including the rainy ones (although they tend not to do much flying on those days).

Swallow in rain

Not much flying in the rain (photo by Craig)

Swallow being rescued

Just as the Swallow is released

Craig had a particularly close encounter with one in the beginning of May when it couldn’t find it’s way out of one of the outbuildings. Perhaps it had stunned itself flying into a window, or perhaps it was Craig’s cool demeanor, but it was very calm as Craig picked it up and released it back into the air.

Our latest encounter with the swallows is in the summer house. We have a pair of nesting birds in the eaves of the porch. They (or one of them) is sitting regularly in the nest, we think they have eggs. We can watch this space from the inside through the window, so will not disturbed the family. It’s our very own Springwatch! I wonder what we’ll catch on camera.

Watch this space! Video footage shot, just need to find the right wires to connect it up to the computer … This may take longer than hoped …

Tree nursery – it’s a start!

Between 30,000 and 50,000 – that’s the number of trees Craig thinks we’ll need for the forest gardens according to the back of the envelope calculations he did the other day.

Our growing tree nursery

Our growing tree nursery

It’s a good job we’ve already made a start!

It is a real joy to see our little tree nursery grow. It is amazing just how fast the trees are growing.

I know I mentioned them on the last post, but I am really enjoying the Stone pines (pinus pinea). I love the way they catch and store water with their needles …

Pinus pinea catches and stores water

Pinus pinea catches and stores water

Gingko biloba germinating

Gingko biloba germinating

Now the Ginkgos (Ginkgo biloba) are starting to germinate and vie for my attention too…

Not to mention the Wych elms (Ulmus glabra) which have just the most brilliant leaves ever…

And the Hawthorn berries (Crataegus monogyna) and Beech nuts (Fagus sylvatica) we collected from our hedges last year … all good stuff.

Plenty to keep me busy.