In 1906 Edith Holden started a Diary, now known as ‘The Country Diary Of An Edwardian Lady’. In it, she observed Natures cycle through the months of the year, writing simply about the weather, the birds, the flowers and the natural world around her. All the pages are beautifully ornamented with her original artwork and favourite poems. In this Blog, I’m going to try to emulate her Diary in a modern way. For a start, this is a blog on a computer, not pen and ink lovingly written on paper! However, I hope that the end result will have some similarities, in that I want to capture day by day, month by month the steady rhythm of Nature through the year. For although our 21st century lives are hectic, chaotic, noisy and deafened by electronics, the beat of the natural world, which is the backdrop to all our lives whether we notice it or not, remains ever the same. So take a sedate, gentle and steady-paced journey with me through the next year, observing the natural world. Our way of life may have changed almost beyond recognition since 1906, but nature is doing what it always has done, the cycle of nature remains constant and reassuringly predictable. In that respect, nothing has changed. ‘ No Winter lasts forever; no Spring skips its turn.’ (Hal Borland)

Thursday, 17 October 2013

October 17th.

A lovely day on the Gwent levels. The reed beds are starting to die back and are very quiet, the absence of the summer warblers,who filled the reeds with outbursts of babbling song is very noticeable. The numbers of wintering ducks has increased however, with large flocks of teal, wigeon, shoveler, gadwall ; the ever present coots, mallards, moorhens and swans make it a very busy place! 

Along a quiet patch of reeds growing out of a muddy bank, I was very fortunate to see three water rails foraging through the mud and occasionally chasing each other out into the open. They're such secretive birds, and it's rare to be able to watch them for a prolonged period and get a really good look at them.Out on the mudflats, where the Usk meets the Bristol Channel were lots of curlews, filling the quiet day with their lovely babbling call.
 A couple of days ago I found to my surprise, a great crested newt swimming around in my dogs water bowl, it's now been re-homed in a suitable pond!

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