Recently I saw and heard a bird of prey that I didn’t recognise swooping around above the Backies. It was flying through a group of swallows. When I looked it up on the RSPB and BTO web-sites it was that behaviour which clearly identified that the bird was a Hobby! Not a bird often seen in this area so I feel very lucky to have spotted it.
We have been kindly donated some flowers from BugLife as part of their Urban Buzz project. These are being cared for by a Friend of Clifton Backies – Lesley, and will be planted once we have our new bench installed. Here is a taste of the flowers we will be seeing on Backies (photos taken by Lesley Booth):
Fantastic Mr. Fox! – This fine animal was very boldly exploring the hay meadow near the Oak trees
Buttercup Meadow in May
This fine show of yellow is from the North meadow where the main species present are Creeping Buttercup (ranunculus repens) and Meadow Buttercup (ranunculus acris). The Creeping Buttercups are low-growing and carpet the meadow, whereas Meadow Buttercups are a taller variety.
As part of National Nest Box Week, the Friends of Clifton Backies group decided to make and put up a number of bird nest boxes on site.
We purchased some wood and fixings, and set about making boxes with a hole suitable for Tits and Sparrows, and open boxes for Robins. Steve and Rob helped me to build 13 boxes in total! They were all then externally painted with environmentally-friendly wood preservative. Here’s a picture of the finished boxes:
At the beginning of March, my son and I took a pair of ladders to install the boxes at Clifton Backies.
After fixing a few, I noticed that prospective tenants were already taking a look in the holes only 10 minutes after installation!
Here’s a few photos of the installation and a couple of nest boxes in situ:
Let’s hope that they will help the birds to keep safe and raise plenty of young!
These Moorhen chicks are brave to be sharing a perch with the Terrapins in Clifton Backies pond! All chicks fledged and are doing great!
Photo by Lesley Booth