Here in Carmarthenshire, we haven’t had a very cold winter – not even many frosts. And while it’s been fairly wet and windy, this week we’ve seen and heard lots of wildlife – enough to make us think that spring is well on its way.
The tawny owls have been making a real racket in the hedgerows just before dawn.
We’ve seen a pair of blue tits checking out one of our new nest boxes, and the first murmerings of the dawn chorus are definitely starting.
One of the most audio-visual spectacles also began last week – the frog chorus. What started with a gentle purr, grew rapidly to something of a roar. The pond edge is now full of croaking frogs looking for mates. We hope to get some video footage soon.
We’re not sure how the mild winter has affected hibernation, but we’ve also seen our first hedgehog of the year. It was walking near the compost heap in the vegetable garden where it might have spent the winter, or was just looking for some food.
We saw a caterpillar emerge from its hiding place in the yurt felt, then cocoon itself. Within a week, we saw it emerge as a beautiful ruby tiger moth. Our book says they fly May-June, so this little moth seems to be a bit ahead of the game.