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letting nature back in

nature and nurture in suburban spaces

Densely stacked: Provisioning for winter

Here in the southern hemisphere we a have been stacking our woodpile with dry wood in readiness for the winter that lies ahead. Continue reading “Densely stacked: Provisioning for winter”

The forest-loving African Olive-Pigeon – a special garden visitor

What has bright yellow legs and bill, is predominantly purple-brown with beautiful speckled markings and hints of iridescence, a soothing deep and almost resonant call, clambers about in large trees with clumsy agility in search of small fruits, and is one of my favourite garden birds? Continue reading “The forest-loving African Olive-Pigeon – a special garden visitor”

Yer Greens: Freshly picked

The autumn days are shortening here in South Africa, but our small vegetable garden is still yielding edible greens. Continue reading “Yer Greens: Freshly picked”

An unexpected guest: A longhorned beetle in the spinach patch

Here is a serendipitous juxtaposition: a longhorned beetle on our patch of New Zealand spinach. I use the word serendipitous because it was unforeseen and opportune, and because serendipitous has a great positive ring to it. Continue reading “An unexpected guest: A longhorned beetle in the spinach patch”

Dragonfly hawking

Atop a leaf, a dragonfly perches waiting for prey. Continue reading “Dragonfly hawking”

Black Sparrowhawks in urban areas: Where to now?

The name “sparrowhawk” comes from the prey (sparrows) of some species of sparrowhawks, and does not refer to the size of the raptor itself. Continue reading “Black Sparrowhawks in urban areas: Where to now?”

A wish for the vulnerable

“Sharing wishes with strangers makes a powerful emotional statement”. This week’s photo challenge is inspired by the Japanese tradition of sharing hopes and dreams by writing wishes on small wooden plaques called ema, which are a hung up together in Shinto shrines in the hope that the spirits will grant these wishes. Continue reading “A wish for the vulnerable”

Take me to your Commodore: Garden butterflies from the African savannahs

Even those who don’t like caterpillars tend to like butterflies, perhaps forgetting that caterpillars are the larvae of butterflies? Continue reading “Take me to your Commodore: Garden butterflies from the African savannahs”

The road taken: Snail trail encounter

This large Granular Agate Snail, was making slow but determined progress across our garden lawn. Guessing the direction of the road it had taken, I lay down on the lawn with my camera. Continue reading “The road taken: Snail trail encounter”

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