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  • Writer's pictureCrone

Dry August

Last week, the temperature climbed again into the thirties - and it hadn't rained much at all for weeks. The fields are parched - brown rather than green or golden. Trees are shedding their leaves. The pollen has gone, says Mischa, and the blackberries are little dry nuggets.

There seem to be more dead animals at the side of the road than usual. In fact, one dead badger - a juvenile, I thought - was in the same place and looked the same size as the one I saw when driving home from the last bat survey. There are dead animals in the countryside too.

I saw a little field mouse and a clouded yellow butterfly on one day's hot-jog.

I haven't knowingly seen either of these beings alive.

The next day I ran (puff-plodded) past the swan pond. I could only see the two adults.

The little oak I photographed a few weeks ago - a post about tree generations, I think - has been mown down. And the poplars in the copse look dreadful.

In fact, the land as a whole looks rather sad.

OK. Maybe not too bad.

And there is some better news.

First off, I managed a good live butterfly photo - common blues.

And it seems there's a little invert-dude on the top of that stalk! very clearly trying not to invade their privacy.

I saw Divo and Diva with two babies. I don't know if the other(s) survived, but two is impressive for now. And then I saw the new Brave Three - parents (they are moulting and hard to recognise - I am sure Three and I guess Droopy, but... I was still hoping CD) and a baby, who is rather small and scruffy but lively.

On the poplar front, the poplar people came to the Reserve and will provide Mischa with six black poplars AND will give me two for Devon!

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Aug 19, 2022

I love how you quietly put about the black poplars at the end of the post! What time of year will you plant them? ... Your photos certainly show what can happen when there's not enough rain. It's moving to see the dead creatures. The butterflies are doing their best to procreate. Always glad to get the crow report. Toes crossed that the cygnets are ok.

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