30 Days Wild 2017 – Days 11 – 15

Day 11 – June 11th was #2minutebeachclean and #2minutelitterpickup day run by beachclean.net. I headed out to a nearby road to do a bit of a tidy up, I took two bags with me thinking there wouldn’t be too much litter to pick up. I should have taken more! I cleaned a half mile stretch; there were cans, crisp packets, napkins, fast food boxes, bottles, car parts, sweet rappers etc I know some litter escapes from peoples bins etc but the majority of litter is dropped.  I wish everyone could understand the damage litter causes to nature.  How much effort does it really take to dispose of it responsibly.  I was talking to a friend about how much I had collected, when she was at school a fair few years ago they used to take it in turns go out on litter duty, I wonder if schools still do that today and if they do, does it make their students more aware of their surroundings?

Day 12 – was a wild day in a different sense. A day out at Longleat Safari Park! Seeing I have an extremely busy time at work coming up a couple of days holiday beforehand was required.  If I can get a day or two off then I always plan to do something a little different to keep my spirits up! It was a lovely sunny day at Longleat, warm but nothing like we have seen this week, which was a blessing as the A/C in my car is broken!  It was quite quiet too which meant starting the drive through at 10am was great as I could walk around the Wallaby’s and Lemur’s easily.  I decided to give the monkey’s a miss as I wanted to keep my car in one piece! Driving through and feeding the Red Deer was lovely, they are so friendly, although one did make me jump when she put her head in the window while I was looking the other way! They seem to understand ‘sorry I don’t have any food left!’.  I had a closer encounter than I was expecting with a Tiger, it wandered straight towards the car 🙂 Today was the first time I had ever seen the Hippo’s in the lake, on other visits they have been hiding in their field/mud hole.  

Day 13 – I had to take the car for its annual service.  I was planning to spend some time on the way back in Bath to try and see the Bath Peregrines.  I had meant to go and see them last year though I don’t go towards Bath very often.  The Hawk and Owl Trust installed a nesting box at St John’s Roman Catholic Church in 2005 where they have hatched young ever season since.   I had looked up on the website the location to view them from and headed to the opposite side of the river from Riverside Walk.  I had been watching them for a while when a crow caught my eye, it was carrying something but it wasn’t nesting material – it landed in a tree a few meters away, it was half a rat! A gentleman asked if I had seen a Peregrine, he worked for the Hawk and Owl Trust and was on the lookout for a fledgling that they had temporarily lost track of; they have been testing their flying capability and they are keeping an eye on them.  He was kind enough to tell me where one of the others was sitting, so I could get a closer view. It was lovely to watch a while, unfortunately I couldn’t stay longer as I had to head home.

Day 14 – Today was one of those ‘busy’ days.  Once I had left work I stopped by my patch for a short while and watched the sun setting.

Day 15 – I headed out for a walk/drive in the countryside.  I wanted to go to a Wildflower meadow to see how it was progressing this year, it is located amongst farmers fields so I have to drive as close as I can down one of the tracks and then walk the rest of the way.  I passed Goldfinches in a rape field feeding and then as I turned the corner towards the meadow a Badger ran across my path.  I must have startled it as it ran off very quickly which was such a shame as it would have been lovely to have watched from a far.  It was good to know it was there though, as a previous year I found what I thought was Badger latrines in a nearby field so hopefully they still have a sett nearby.  I will have to try and find it in the winter as I don’t think I would have much luck at the moment in the Maze fields!  The Meadow at the moment is predominantly grasses, I think it was later in the year that it flowered last year so I will have to keep checking on it.  I saw a bird fly over and although unsure of what it was, I think it was a Hobby.  On my route home I took a detour to the location I saw the Hare on Day 1, I was surprise to find one in the same field, I felt rather lucky 🙂

Longleat Safari Park – April 2016

Every April, I head out to Longleat Safari Park with my friend and her family for their little boy’s birthday. This year he was 7 and he was still as excited to see the animals as he was the first time we went!  He has always liked animals from when he was very young and he always leaves the park with a new cuddly toy of his favourite animals of the day – this year it was the red panda and cheetah.

We were so lucky with the weather – the week before Storm Katie had gone through and it looked as though the weekend we were due to meet would be wet too, but thankfully it turned for the better and we had a glorious Spring day.

I know a lot of people don’t like zoos / safari parks because animals are caged etc. – in some situations I agree but in others I don’t.  They are a great way for children and also adults to see and more importantly, learn about the animals on our planet and hopefully lead them to want to help and support our wild animals.