I was slowly waking up the other day when I was jolted awake by an extraordinary commotion on the bird feeder. I carefully pulled back the curtain – to find myself face to furry face with a squirrel sitting in the feeder!
Needless to say, I was torn between the thoughts of having all that lovely finch food nicked – stolen! – by this character, and thoughts of the photo opportunity this presented.
My other wildlife encounters over the weekend were more expected. I went for a walk on Bollihope Common, in Weardale, and saw large numbers of curlew, lapwings and golden plovers. The amazing thing about these birds is that they’ll spend their winters trekking about on the soft mud of estuaries like the Severn or Tees – but they breed up on high moorland, which seems about as different an environment as it could be. I’d love to know why they choose such contrasting places.
And as a cricket nut since my non-sportsman grandfather introduced me to the game (“I’ll be Derek Underwood and you can be John Snow”, he said), I have to add a note to celebrate the fact that England have finally won a world tournament! An outstanding achievement by a great team.