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letting nature back in

nature and nurture in suburban spaces

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Urban wildlife

Gimme shelter: Juvenile Natal Green Snake finding overnight lodging

Only eventually did we notice a small, juvenile Natal Green Snake apparently trying to climb the smooth surface of a high window pane, when we were having coffee out on our back deck.  The small creature seemed more than a little agitated as it struggled to climb to the top of the window. Continue reading “Gimme shelter: Juvenile Natal Green Snake finding overnight lodging”

A charming visitor: The Cape Robin-Chat

The Cape Robin-Chat rather paradoxically can be shy as well as confiding. These lovely little birds occur over much of South Africa where there is dense enough vegetation to provide for their needs. Continue reading “A charming visitor: The Cape Robin-Chat”

Weekly Photo Find: African Paper Wasp

Photos of striking insects taken in the garden have been catching my attention as I visit my photo archive. Continue reading “Weekly Photo Find: African Paper Wasp”

Sagewood: Spring flowers hosting many insects

One of the first spring-flowerers, the wild Sagewood (Buddleja salviifolia) produces a profusion of nectar-laden blossoms. Their pungent yet strangely sweet scent attracts many insects. Continue reading “Sagewood: Spring flowers hosting many insects”

African Emerald Cuckoo feasts on hairy caterpillars

The Processionary Caterpillars are out in full force again this autumn, providing easy pickings for this female African Emerald Cuckoo. Continue reading “African Emerald Cuckoo feasts on hairy caterpillars”

In the pink: Flower mantids in the garden

My next-door neighbour told me about these mantids in a rose bush in his garden. Three of them have taken up residence in a pink-flowering rosebush and have been there for over a week. Continue reading “In the pink: Flower mantids in the garden”

African Paradise Flycatcher brings a smile

Seeing an African Paradise Flycatcher in the garden always brings me joy. They are not only beautiful, but to the human ear their chirruping call is most cheering. Continue reading “African Paradise Flycatcher brings a smile”

Back to the garden

Although cities have their attractions, I prefer more natural places. We are fortunate to have a suburban garden that backs onto a quiet plantation. Continue reading “Back to the garden”

Family story

The story of survival depends on the strength of family bonds that endure, as epitomized by these Vervet monkeys, even in a hostile world. Continue reading “Family story”

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