It’s been a bad summer for butterflies in England. Most common are the whites, small and large. Occasionally we come across the green veined white, seen here at the National Trust’s Hidcote Manor Garden in Gloucestershire. With wings spread out it is similar to the small white, but the underside shows clear green veins.
Hidcote also gave the bonus of a nice fresh peacock butterfly.
The National Trust’s Bodnant Gardens, set in a sheltered valley near the mountains of Snowdonia, make available to the people grounds that were at one time private property. And what wonderful gardens they are, well worth visiting. Here’s a selection of photographs. Click to view as slideshow.
Most of you will be aware of much of the following from Cornell Lab of Ornithology: seven simple actions to help birds. But if you’re like me, you’ll realise that, although you are aware of them, you may not be doing enough. In the modern world, birds are absolutely dependent on the sum of the actions of all of us. With bird populations in decline, it’s vital that we each do all we can.
Here is a quick summary of the seven things – but do go read at the link above. Sorry it’s US-centric, but the principles apply everywhere.
1. Make windows safer – so many birds fly into them.
2. Keep cats indoors. They are frighteningly effective predators of small birds.
3. Reduce lawn, plant native species to provide food and habitat.
4. Avoid pesticides entirely. They kill natural things, all the way up the food chain.
5. Drink coffee that’s good for birds (shade grown).