Wharfedale Naturalists News Blog

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Wildlife in the snow

A snowy landscape is a thing of beauty: the nearby houses iced with thick snow, the distant moors glimmering and the charcoal branches of trees and bushes outlined in white. But by the end...

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Blackbirds in winter

Our garden has played host to at least seven blackbirds over the winter with, at times, three males picking up scraps beneath the bird feeders and up to four females, including the bird shown...

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February visitors

A friend, snowed in during the bad weather in mid February, told us how she had been entertained by a flock of thirty long-tailed tits visiting her garden and crowding onto the fat balls,...

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Bird surprises

As I began to write this column, I was startled by a loud thud on the window beside me. A wood pigeon, misled by the sky and trees reflected in the glass, had flown...

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Rafflesia

Do you know what flower, “Smells more repulsive than any buffalo carcass in a state of advanced decomposition?” Can grow to 1 metre in diameter? And is named after Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles who...

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Birdfeeder activity

For much of last year our birdfeeders went unfilled, partly because there seemed enough wild food available but also due to our desire to discourage the grey squirrels which have from time to time...

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Finches

Just before you read this column I shall have completed the RSPB Garden Birdwatch. Volunteers are asked to give an hour to watch out for birds in garden or park, to keep a tally...

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Garden heron

Our living room windows give great views on to Farnley Hall Woods behind the house and on to the biggest of our four ponds. However, especially on sunny days, the reflections can be a...

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Outside in January

It’s been a temperature roller-coaster so far this winter: ice and snow before Christmas, mild over the Bank Holiday and back to icy winds and frozen fields. As I look out now, everywhere is...

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Ivy “bears the crown!”

In the olden days before the invention of fairy lights and sparkly decorations, people adorned their homes for Christmas with greenery- traditionally swathes of holly, mistletoe and ivy, all evergreen and all with berries,...