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letting nature back in

nature and nurture in suburban spaces

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Garden pond

Journeying from freshwater pans to garden pond

One of the most beautiful fresh water pans in the northern Zululand region (Maputoland) of KwaZulu-Natal is the Inyamiti Pan in Ndumo Game Reserve.  The pan is fringed by fever trees with their pale yellow bark reflecting in the water, especially in summer when the water level is high.

Continue reading “Journeying from freshwater pans to garden pond”

Perceiving patterns at the pond

Some leisurely lurking around our garden pond in times past yielded some patterns pleasing to the eye and to the mind. In these troubled times and after the widespread damage from the fearsome hailstorm we experienced last week, for this post I settle for some undemanding peace and quiet.

Continue reading “Perceiving patterns at the pond”

The time of the season: Guttural toads go a-courting

Guttural Toads and other frogs have been galvanised into springtime activity by sprinklings of early season rain. The males have been calling for mates culminating in pairs spawning in our pond. Continue reading “The time of the season: Guttural toads go a-courting”

A dry season: Just add water

The main seasons in our part of the world are only two: wet season and dry season. But prolonged drought over much of the country has erased that distinction into one long dry bleakness where rain of any significance is a memory or a hope. Continue reading “A dry season: Just add water”

Damselflies: Fleet flyer, aquatic egg layer

 

Damselflies hunt on the wing. They are not as acrobatic in flight as dragonflies, and I have seen them in flight manoeuvring slowly, rather like emaciated air balloons, floating horizontally searching for prey in the garden. Continue reading “Damselflies: Fleet flyer, aquatic egg layer”

Hadeda ibis: From wetlands to birdbaths

From being primarily associated with wetlands and woodlands the hadeda ibis has successfully expanded its range across much of the country even where it was formerly absent, and nowadays populations flourish even in urban areas. In suburbia it continues its association with water in the form of well-watered lawns, ponds and swimming pools. Continue reading “Hadeda ibis: From wetlands to birdbaths”

Fishing spider catching tadpoles in the garden pond

I often see fishing spiders in our garden pond, but this is the only time I have seen one actually catching prey, and I was fortunate to have the camera with me. Continue reading “Fishing spider catching tadpoles in the garden pond”

There be dragonflies

Considering there are over 3000 species of dragonflies in the world, it’s not surprising that a few find their way to our garden pond. Continue reading “There be dragonflies”

On garden pond: Homemade and wildlife friendly

A wildlife-friendly pond even in a suburban garden can really enrich the space. Although we still provide bird baths, which are heavily used, a pond with aquatic plants adds another dimension, attracting other creatures in addition to the birds. Continue reading “On garden pond: Homemade and wildlife friendly”

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