Happily Ever After

Life in The Rural Retreat with a beautiful wife, three cats, garden wildlife, a camera, a computer – and increasing amounts about running

Earlier posts can be found on Adventures of a Lone Bass Player, where this blog began life. Recent entries can be found here.


A Close Escape

by admin - 22:41 on 31 August 2011

Free meals in The Rural Retreat's garden are not free of risk, as one lucky great spotted woodpecker learned today.

The woody in question was enjoying a quiet meal on the peanut feeder outside the sitting room window, Matchgirl reports, when every other bird in the vicinity disappeared – except the sparrowhawk on the garden gate barely three feet away.

I don't know whether the woody was very cool or just slow on the uptake, but when it became aware of its peril it did what comes naturally. Nothing. The bird stayed still, obviously thinking that movement was more likely to rouse the sparrowhawk's aggressive instincts.

It was a wise decision, for after a very long minute the predator flew away; the traumatised woodpecker remained unmoving for much longer.

There was trauma of another kind when I returned home at 10pm and was told by Matchgirl that a pine marten had sauntered into the garden just after I left, at 7pm. A marten, in daylight, and it's almost September! What's more, s/he or another one returned later, for the replacement egg that Matchgirl put out had gone too.

The Bushnell revealed marten visits last night at 9.30pm and 4.30am. Predictable they're not.

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