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Nature blog - Jenny Bourne

The RPA Nature blog with Jenny Bourne.

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Sad fox news, weather, robin, snowdrop 'Nothing Special'

Date posted: Wednesday 24th January 2018

Sad fox news, weather, robin, snowdrop 'Nothing Special'

Yet another dying fox has been found on site on Monday, just over a month after the first one both in very similar circumstances and it’s hard not to believe that they haven’t been poisoned or eaten prey that has been poisoned, such as rats. Both curled up as though asleep in the open, the first one on a plot path and now this one, first noticed lying at the front of someone’s plot after which it limped over to lie nearby, oblivious to the people nearby. Both foxes looked healthy, no sign of mange or other ailments. It is too
coincidental that both have died in such a short, close period of time. This is an awful thing to be occurring on our site and I’m very concerned that the fox that regularly patrols along the back of
our plots hasn’t succumbed, or indeed is this fox..

The ground feeders haven’t had too hard of a time of it recently, as it’s been very wet, the soil is soft and the digging is easy for robins, thrushes, blackbirds etc. But the robin, a top opportunist is always about, as soon as you get the fork or spade out and commence work! One of our plotholders has now got ‘his’ robin eating mealworms from his hand so I’ve been attempting to lure ‘my’ robin down with suet pellets. No luck so far, although she/he does give a burst of song after gulping down a couple of offerings…

The mistletoe berries I smeared onto the apple tree trunk have now produced four plants – no berries as yet, although I’m still inordinately pleased with myself for having propagated them in th first place!

Three different varieties of snowdrops now up, including the somewhat modestly named ‘Nothing Special’, bought from the Chelsea Physic Garden snowdrop weekend a few years ago. It’s that time of year for browsing through the plant catalogues and sending off for new seeds, always in hope of a bumper crop of veg and flowers – having an allotment can sometimes seem to be, like second marriage, the triumph of hope over experience, depending on the seasonal weather, getting things in at the right time, right soil and place, compost and manure where needed and the elbow work!