our neighbours are just wild!
Living on the edge of the Scottish Highlands, we are blessed with a great variety of wildlife here. For example, on the way to school this morning in the mist and rain, we saw a buzzard launching itself heavily from the branch of an oak tree and beating away across the field. On the way home again, in addition to the usual quantities of young pheasants, I caught sight of two roe deer standing in the long grass between two avenues of trees. Roe deer are so well disguised that you can really only see them in the open: in the woods their brownish-grey coats just vanish into the shadows. Only their white behinds give them away.
Yesterday we had the cheering sight of a red squirrel scampering across the lawn towards a copse of beech and sweet chestnut. He will find plenty of nuts littering the ground there! Our red squirrel numbers have dropped sadly in the past few years, so it is always a pleasure to see one. The day before that, one of the gamekeepers showed the boys two poor little dead moles which he had trapped. They do make an awful mess of the lawns for such a tiny animal. He showed the boys the moles’ big spade-like front paws and pinprick eyes. And the previous day we saw a (live, thankfully) hedgehog on the way home from school: we stopped to watch him snuffling about by our feet and trotting off into the field. Hedgehogs are very pleasing little bodies, quite private and always busy on some errand.
Well, with the boys back at school after the October break, I have taken a precious few minutes to myself to sit down with a coffee after doing the chores. But must head into the rain again now with the dogs, who have been waiting patiently for their morning walk.