Spring flowers and birds are back at last

Wood Anemone in Gleadless Valley
Wood Anemone in Gleadless Valley
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At last, the wood anemones are now out with stunning displays, Enid Scholey emailed to say,

‘On Sunday, April 14, we walked from Firth Park across Wincobank Common, where we heard and saw chiffchaff, and also spotted 14 magpies. Off the edge of Wincobank we saw our first swallows, about three or four’.

Moving on to Woolley Woods, Enid saw her first wood anemones in flower – only a small patch but definitely in bloom.

In Ray Sykes’ garden, the anemones have now joined the lesser celandines that have been out for some weeks.

I had a message from Roy Robinson of Ansell Road, Sheffield, with a few tips for encouraging your blue tits to nest. He says ‘I put a couple of inches of cotton wool in the bottom of the box, when the blue tits duly arrived they spent a day chucking out the cotton wool which was festooned all around our garden.

‘For the past few days, we have had a pair of goldfinches collecting up all the cotton wool but unfortunately their nest is not in our garden.’

‘I guess the moral of this story is that the birds do not always appreciate what we are doing to try to help them.’

On a sad note, news came through this of the loss of one of Britain’s oldest oak trees – the great oak of Pontfadog in North Wales, presumably weakened by the wet summer last year, and then by the extreme cold weather and snow.