Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Chestnut and Pheasant

Don't worry I'm not about to go all food review on you. As much as Chestnut and Pheasant may sound like a tasty seasonal dish served at a countrymans pub, it is actually the wildlife I encountered today.

Last night was the first night of 2015 that I put the moth trap out. Last year I recorded an incredible 322 species in my garden and I didn't even start til March! This year I would, of course, like to see if I can beat that, although it is not really all about the numbers - moths, like all insects, are good indicators of climate change, pollution levels, and habitat loss etc so the more records we collect the better chance we have of seeing how the environment is doing.

So after a rough nights sleep (I have the dreaded winter lurgy) and having a couple of Robins sing to me all night (the moth trap light must had fooled them into thinking it was daytime) I opened the trap and searched all the way to the bottom to find nothing but midges and a single Chestnut moth. This was actually a good thing, I am usually very enthusiastic about moths but the lurgy I awoke with this morning made it feel more like a chore than a fun activity. Needless to say I was soon back curled up in a sleepy ball under my blanket and duvet. 

My Chestnut moth looked a little like this one - I didn't get a picture
so this one is borrowed from Gail Hampshire on Flickr

Later this afternoon I emerged again for a cup of earl grey and a bite of naan (leftover dinner). Just as I took my first few sips of tea a stunning male pheasant strutted past our front gate, over our driveway, and in to the garden. We've had pheasants shyly wander through the garden before but this one looked to have a purpose, like he'd done this before. He headed straight for the bird feeders. At first he considered trying to leap up and land on one, but soon opted for just the leftover seeds on the ground.

Male Pheasant

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