sad news the other baby jackdaw died. We think the parents stopped coming down to feed him although they were always around and calling to him. Its such a shame - he was almost there... nature is so harsh.
Monday I had a fantstic day (even though it was "work") and went out to Skomer. Its not often we will use this space for tales of the W word but this is definitely worth it!
After the short boat trip from Martin's Haven we landed on Skomer - the jewel in pembrokeshire's island crown - and home to simply loads and loads of puffins (as well as lots of other interesting birds, and seals and porpoise in its surrounding waters).
Despite appearances they are remarkably fast little birds, so trying to take photos of them landing - the funniest bit - is a bit tricky!! Despite that they have no interest in humans, they are simply not bothered, and go about their business delivering sand eels to their chicks completely oblivious to you - unless you are in their way, in which case they just look at you until you move! Cute, very very cute...
The weather held for us despite the forecasts of thundery showers - only once did it let rip and most of us were busy having lunch by that point.
If you live in or visit pembrokeshire you simply have to visit the island. And if you live in South and West Wales you simply have to join the wildlife trust (join here) to make sure the wildlife on our patch is protected for the future. Go on ... it really will make a difference! And while you're at it why not get membership as a present for someone else - you can find out their local trust here
2 days of slogging away at the grass in the field and Rhys has done a great job of cutting it down so you can at least make out rows of fruit bushes now! Thing is we now have to shift all the cut grass, and there's lots... Any suggestions?!
We did find a very cute thing in one of the red currants... not this year's we think if you know who lives in a house like this let us know.
Sorry to report that the smaller of the jackdaw chicks has died. The other one looks to be ok - wing feathers are nearly all there, just waiting on some tail ones now. We'll keep checking to make sure mum and dad continue to come in and feed him.
Despite the feathers, our little jackdaws quite clearly would prefer to snuggle up! This was them this morning. I'm not too impressed with mum and dad's housekeeping though, they look as though they are keeping themselves busy, but the picture suggests otherwise - its getting pretty messy on the floor... Can anyone tell me whether I should I put some more newspaper or straw down?
I expect you're wondering how the crops are doing, well we're pleased to report we are regularly eating our own salad, have picked 1 courgette and lots of delicous strawberries! The runner beans are 8ft tall and flowering, and the tomatoes and peppers are starting to flower...
Our voracious predators, haven't kept the greenfly at bay, so we've resorted to soapy water to try and get the numbers down - we have spotted a couple of these chaps though, so hopefully we might get some more larvae for free soon!!!
OK so the floor of the barn is obviously much nicer than the nest, as baby 1 has been joined by his baby brother. We put the video camera in just to check she is coming in regularly unfortunately for the camera they are tucked behind the boxes so not easy to get a shot of mum feeding but we have seen her going down to them. They really make a racket at food time.
The barn is cat proof so we'll just have to see how they fare. Hopefully it won't be long until they can actually give flying a proper go.
We don't think there are anymore in the nest but you never know! Maybe tomorrow it'll be three...
Oh dear one of the Jackdaw chicks has fallen out of the nest. Its ok for now, having decided it wants to be the first to stay in the barn, rather than heading out the other way and landing on the big pile of rocks below the nest on the outside wall. Mum knows where it is and has visited it to feed it so fingers crossed it will be ok and figure out how to fly pretty quickly!
If we can get any pictures we will post them but I'm leaving him quiet for now to make sure mum keeps coming in.
On Thursday night we set about reclaiming the area behind the house from a scrub bank to a lovely space for the sweetcorn. Some hope I thought, but Rhys remained optimistic and with the help of every boys toy imaginable he hacked away until you could actually see it was bank. This is halfway through! ...
By Friday evening we had pulled up the resident bramble roots and started rotivating the area, and by Saturday evening, ably assisted by Nina, all the sweetcorn plants were happily settled, if a little hot, in their new site.
And there'e even room for a raised bed or two next to them ... anyone got some spare topsoil?!