Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Back on the Early Shift

It took me by surprise when I spotted Henry on the monitor about 10.15 last night. It is quite a few days since the hogs were on the early shift here. As I watched and captured a few snippets of video I thought that Henry was by himself. It was a while later that I made out Honey was there in the background.

I scatter a mixture of dried mealworms, crushed unsalted peanuts and sunflower hearts all over the paved area under the bird feeders. That way they can both eat in peace without invading each others space.

At the beginning of this clip Honey is in the background and just looks like a reflection of Henry as he snuffles his way througn his supper. Honey didn't come close to the camera until well after Henry had moved on and I had already switched off the computer.

Monday, 29 June 2009

Juvenile Magpies Visit the Garden

This morning I thought there were about four Magpies in the garden but they scattered as soon as they noticed me. At that time I thought there was one juvenile in the group.

This evening they were back again and I could see it was one parent and three juveniles. The youngsters were bouncing around all over the place as though they were riding invisible space hoppers. Every now and they they would squawk to beg for food in spite of the fact that they seemed quite capable of feeding themselves.

Juvenile Magpie.


One youngster did manage to plead hunger and was fed by the adult.

Adult Magpie Feeding a Juvenile

Sunday, 28 June 2009

How to Prepare Your Slug for Lunch - Video

I was watching a Juvenile Blackbird as it kept flying half way up the front wall of my shed. I thought - why is it trying to get in there? After about four attempts I found out why as it landed with a small slug in its beak. It must have good eyesight as the slug was virtually the same colour as the shed. Once the bird had grabbed the slug it then stood on the concrete busily wiping the slug backwards and forwards for quite a while before finally eating it. The video starts where the Blackbird is wiping the slug on the ground.

I wonder why they do that. Can it be to kill it? Maybe to wipe off the slime if it is not a nice taste. Whatever the reason I have seen Blackbirds perform this action on many occasions over the years.

While we on our afternoon perambulation I was pleased to spot a juvenile Song Thrush in a front garden. It is nice to know they are breeding round here.

On the weather front it has been a warm, humid day even though the Sun didn't break through the clouds until about 3.30pm. At least that stopped it from getting excessively hot though it did look pretty dismal for a lot of the day.

Saturday, 27 June 2009

Ringed Starling and two Moths

As the usual noisy gang of Starlings swooped down to feed I noticed that one of them had been ringed. Something I might expect to see on the more endangered species but was surprised to see on such a common bird. Some of these birds are resident and some are visitors and migrate to the European mainland so this may be a way of finding out how many of each type we have.

Ringed Starling

Starling Ring

It looked to be a shiny new ring to me. I wonder where it was tagged. I need to be able to see more of the number so I could look it up.

Having had a look around the web and using what I can make out on the ring it appears to have been issued by Riksmuseum Stockholm, Sweden so this may well be one of our visiting Starlings. I hope I can get some more photos of it to read the whole number. Then I can get the full information about this bird.

Yesterday when I went to get the mower out I noticed a couple of moths doing their best to camouflage themselves against the brickwork.

Moth Camouflage

Moth Camouflage

Any help in identifying them would be gratefully received.

The 2nd one looks like one of the wave moths to me. Possibly the Riband Wave (Idaea aversata).

Friday, 26 June 2009

Song Thrush Video

After weeks of trying I finally managed to video a Song Thrush in full song. It was perched about 60 feet up at the top of the leylandii at the bottom of the garden and I managed to sneak the camcorder on its tripod out of the back door.

Colour in the Garden

After enjoying a nice carvery yesterday I spent a while in the garden trying to film some singing birds but they were as shy as ever. Instead I had a look round to see what colour was showing. So here it is - Flowery Friday.




- and not a red beetle in sight!

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Of Swifts and Woodpeckers

Yesterday morning when I went through to the kitchen I saw what I thought was a tatty looking Starling with a lot of white on its feathers. As I concentrated I saw the flash of red on its head and it slowly dawned on me that I was looking at a Greater Spotted Woodpecker enjoying a peanut breakfast. By the amount of red on its head it would appear to have been a juvenile. Unfortunately it spotted me as soon as I moved the camera to take a shot and it was gone in a flash. This is the first woodpecker I have seen in the garden and in fact the first I have seen for over fifty years. I am now hoping it returns so I can get a bit of video for the record.

Some days ago when I was sat in the garden watching the birds flying about I noticed a small group of Swifts. What surprised me was the height at which they were flying. A couple of times they were circling the same patch of sky, obviously taking advantage of a thermal to gain even more height.


I could only get some fuzzy shots of them as, at the height they were flying, the images were very small sections in the photo frame. I sat and watched them for about half an hour as they swooped around the sky at a fair old speed. I assume that there must be plenty of high flying insects for them to feed on.

The only other birds seen in the sky that day, apart from the local bird visitors, were a couple of seagulls heading inland.


Also spotted a couple of times at night, but still evading the camera, has been a Tawny Owl which uses the nearby telegraph poles as a perch.

No sign of the Hedgehogs for a few nights. I assume they are back on the late shift.

Tuesday, 23 June 2009



Yesterday when I checked my containers of lilies for red beetles I though I was in the clear. I should have known better. I had forgotten one large pot near where I had seen the beetle. Today I remembered to check that out. DISASTER! I immediately saw a Red Lily Beetle on one of the flower buds and examination of the leaves soon brought dozens of larvae in various sizes in to view. Closer examination also showed a lot of leaves had the tiny sausage shaped orangey red eggs on the underneath. This beetle seems to have been infesting these lilies for many days.

Red Lily Beetle, Eggs, Larvae

I took a few photographs and some video of the culprit before I consigned all the plants from that pot to the green wheelie bin and dispatched the beetle permanently before it could do any more damage. Shame really as it is such a beautiful insect.

Pretty as it was I hope never to see another one, at least not in my garden.

Monday, 22 June 2009

Pesky Little Red Beetle

As I was about to lock up the shed before our afternoon walk I spotted something brilliant red climbing up the edge of the shed door. Luckily it stayed long enough to grab the camera and take its portrait. This pretty beetle is about 10mm in length.


It appears to be an example of lilioceris lilii (the Red Lily Beetle) which is very destructive to many bulbous lily plants as both the adults and larvae feed on the leaves, flowers and stems of the plant. At one time they were confined to the south of England but with the rise in average temperatures they have spread northwards. Certainly it was not very far away from one of my containers which is planted with lilies.

If your lilies are being attacked by these pretty little beetles then it may be worth looking at Down Garden Services web site where more detailed information about them can be found.


I gave my lily plants the once over and have not detected any eggs or larvae so far so the pest may have only arrived recently in my garden.

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Bird Behaviour

A few days ago I was watching a pair of Wood Pigeons. First the male was walking along the ridge tiles following a female. He was making the usual cooing sounds with his chest puffed out and his head bobbing up and down as he walked. She was moving ahead of him but slowly so he could keep up. This activity usually ends up with the female flying off, but not this time.

Shortly after that they were together on next doors roof. Both standing very close together. Every so often the male appeared to rub his beak down his back between his wings and then offer his beak to the female. There would then be a rubbing of beaks. I can only assume that he is picking up some oil from a gland on his back and offering it to her, which she appeared very willing to accept.

Wood Pigeons

Several times I have heard the sound of a Song Thrush bashing the living daylights out of a snail. usually on one of the concrete paths. Yesterday one was down the bottom of the garden trying to use a piece of timber to do the job. I managed to get a few still photos but as I homed in with the camcorder it moved out of sight behind a planter.

Song Thrush with Snail

Earlier in the day I had heard a Song Thrush singing very close by but couldn't spot it. Towards dusk it was sat high up on a Leylandii in the pouring rain singing away. As I got the camcorder set so I could see it and waited for the thing to auto focus, that was painfully slow as the light was poor by now, the Thrush flew away. Once again the bird's inbuilt camera detecting radar was working to perfection!

The day before I did manage to film a male Chaffinch on the same branch of the same tree as it was calling. It was a long way away so I couldn't get as close a shot as I would have liked.


A few more flowers are showing their blooms to perfection. This is the second of my pond lilies to show this year.


And this is a small grafted standard rose, Raspberry Royale, which produces an absolute mass of flowers each year. It grows in a planter next to the pond.

Rose Raspberry Royale

No sign of the Hedgehogs before I went to bed but it was raining the proverbial cats and dogs. All I saw was a frog as it leapt its way across the paved area under the bird feeders.

Saturday, 20 June 2009

The Wanderers Return

What a week - started off really busy and then my broadband speed with Tiscali dropped from a normal 3500Kb/s to a drastic 110Kb/s. Not for the first time as the same thing happened towards the end of last year. All appears to be back to normal now.

After an absence of a few weeks I was very pleased to see the Goldfinches return to the feeders. I managed to take a very short piece of video before the hairy monster went out the back door and scared them off. As the clip was so short I slowed it down to half speed so it would be worth the effort of watching.

Also I was very pleased to see the hedgehogs had not gone AWOL but had changed their routine. Checking through my security video recordings I found that instead of arriving soon after 10pm they had moved their visits to a quarter to one in the morning for several days. Last night though, Honey was back on the early shift so Bobby was able to say a quick hello before bedtime.

Jackdaws continue to visit the ground feeder. They are always on the look out for danger - forever glancing up and in all directions. This one can be seen placing seeds under its feet, presumably while it strips off the outer covering. I have often seen Blue, Coal and Great Tits hold a Sunflower seed on a branch while they peck off small pieces but it wasn't until I viewed this piece of video that I saw a Jackdaw do a similar thing.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Noisy Days

The Starlings continue to squabble over whose turn it is to eat the fat balls. Mostly it is the youngsters who fight off the adults!

Out for our morning constitutional a bit before 7 a.m. this morning I observed a flock of eight Magpies flying about making their normal grating calls.

I wonder how many UK residents remember the childrens programme Magpie and the song which started every show:

One for sorrow, two for joy;
Three for a girl, four for a boy;
Five for silver, six for gold;
Seven for a secret, never to be told;
Eight for a wish, nine for a kiss;
Ten for a bird that's best to miss.

I forgot to make my wish.

On the roof of a bungalow there was an adult Rook feeding two juveniles and what a racket they make when they are hungry. Virtually every type of bird is now accompanied by a few youngsters all calling for food. When we arrived back there were the usual pair of Jackdaws finding what few scraps were left over from yesterday.

On a more melodious note here is a Blackbird doing what Blackbirds do best. He was sat on my aerials singing his little heart out a couple of days ago. It was quite windy but fortunately it only affected the sound for one short section.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Young Jackdaw, Young Greenfinches

Whilst enjoying some welcome sunshine in the garden yesterday I noticed a group of Jackdaws constantly visiting the same area. Wandering down to the end of the garden I could see a baby Jackdaw at the base of a chimney stack a couple of houses away. A group of about six adults were flying around, sometimes landing on the chimney but never next to the young one.


Baby Jackdaw 2

They seemed to be calling to it and encouraging it to fly up to their level. After much coming and going the baby eventually joined them next to the chimney pot and after resting a while flew off with the adults.

Young Jackdaw

At no time did any of the adults attempt to feed the baby. They just appeared to want it to move away from that spot.


For the past two nights there has been no sign of either Hedgehog while I've been watching. Possibly a combination of lighter nights meaning a later start for them and the fact that I go to bed early.

Flapping Galore

This morning the Greenfinches visited with three babies. All the babies were sat on the shed cables and I though the adult was going to get blown off by the draught made by all three youngsters flapping their wings furiously at the same time.

A short video of one youngster being fed this morning:

Friday, 12 June 2009

Video - Greenfinch feeding a Juvenile

I was filming a Greenfinch and a Chaffinch at the seed feeder. On the cables above the feeder was a juvenile Greenfinch. The adult flew up to the juvenile and started to feed it. Fascinating the amount of wing flapping the juvenile does which must be to encourage the adult to pass over the seeds. Before and after this action it was perfectly steady and could fly easily.

There might have been more to see if a gang of Starlings hadn't barged in at the wrong moment!

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Male Chaffinch Feeding Another

I just happened to catch sight of this. A male Chaffinch kept taking seeds from the lawn and flying up to another to feed it. I can't be sure whether the second one is a juvenile or his lady friend. What I found curious was the way the second bird kept moving its head from side to side. I managed to get three of these short episodes on video before the birds flew off together.

Later in the day it seemed the same pair of Chaffinches were either side of the feeder when the juvenile / female took off and flew round to the male with what appears to be a seed in its beak.


Yesterday there was a Great Tit at the peanut feeder which was determined to get one particular piece but seemed to end up dropping most of it before changing its mind. A Robin spent a while trying to balance on the smooth metal perch on a seed feeder. After several tries it eventually managed to fly off with a seed.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Bee Heaven

At the bottom of my garden is a very vigorous Buddleia Globosa. Every two or three years I cut it hard back and within a year it is back up to size - about 7ft high and 7ft wide. At the moment it is a riot of yellow / orange ball shaped flowers.

Just before tea time I wandered down with the camera to see what insect life was being attracted. It was swarming with bees, dozens of them all working hard flitting from ball to ball. They were all of the same black, yellow and orange colouring which I think may be Bombus pratorum. The bush certainly looked like bee heaven by the numbers attracted to it.

Bee Heaven

Yummy, Yummy - sweet nectar.
Bee Sucking Nectar

A Bit of Hoggy Colour

I thought I had everything set up correctly for Hoggy Cam to stay in colour so I was somewhat dismayed when it switched to black and white about 9.30 last night. There was still reasonable light outside so I went out and set it up again and this time it stayed in colour. Henry duly arrived a couple of minutes after ten and stayed for a brief while scoffing dried mealworms and then trundled off. I watched and waited until it was nearly 11pm but no other Hedgehog was seen.

Not as clear as a camcorder would be but using this method I can stay in the warmth these cool evening and I don't have to cope with my aversion to moths.
This is the only bit I managed to capture last night. The colour changes briefly a couple of times - that was me fiddling with the software settings. The only problem with colour pictures is everyone can see the paved area needs weeding!

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

White - Feathers, Lily and Lighting for Hedgehogs

I have noticed over the past year that quite a few birds have white feathers. This has been mentioned on other blogs that I read (including Bird Table News) and has been spotted in several parts of the world but nobody seems to have come up with a reason as to why this seems to be increasing. Today my attention was drawn to this Sparrow with the large amount of white on its head. It looks as though it has been standing out in the snow.


The other day I was pleased to see the first of the water lilies opening in my pond. Many people think that they need deep water. Some do but there are varieties which prefer shallow water. Mine grow well in just 10 inches of water. This is a large flowering variety with a bloom about 3.5 inches across. Each flower only lasts a short time but once they get established there is a sucession of blooms right through the Summer. The large leaves give shade and shelter to the pond dwellers.

Water Lily

For a while now I have toyed with the idea of increasing the amount of white light where the Hedgehogs come to visit. Yesterday I finally got round to converting a small flood lamp to hold two 12 volt LED lamps. Not long ago LED lamps gave poor lighting but the technology is moving on and these give the equivalent of about 20W each. I tried them out last night and the Hedgehogs were not put off at all. Unfortunately the camera switched to black and white about 5 minutes before the hogs arrived so today I altered the camera to stay in colour all the time. Tonight I hope to get some colour video.

LED Lighting

The photo shows one of the bulbs. It looks massive but in reality it is the standard size used for halogen spotlights in the home. The juvenile Starling is looking down on the flood light which itself is quite compact.

Writing of colour hog video, Shirl at Shirl's Gardenwatch has a terrific entry about Hedgehogs visiting her garden with a great piece of colour video, photos and lots of information about attracting them to your own garden.

Regular readers may remember the video of the Rook unhooking the fat ball feeder. I sent that to Springwatch and they have included it in the videos on the site. All the movies that people have sent in can be seen on the Your Movies section of the BBC Springwatch site.

Monday, 8 June 2009

Wet, Wet, Wet!! + Summer Garden Wildlife Survey

I know the garden desperately needed some rain but why does it all have to come at once? It didn't start raining until we just got going on the afternoon walk. To begin with it was fairly steady but soon after we returned the heavens opened for a real deluge accompanied with thunder which rumbled round for ages. At least the thunder moved on but the rain kept up for hours.

I felt really sorry for all the wildlife which has to carry on the daily task of finding food to keep going for another day no matter what.

The look on this poor Greenfinch seemed to sum up the situation:

Please turn the rain off.
Please Turn the Rain Off

Every time I looked out of the kitchen window there were soaking wet birds.

A Wood Pigeon looked really miserable but seemed to make no attempt to find shelter.
Wood Pigeon in the Rain

On a lighter note - I have an outdoor clock mounted on an imitation wagon wheel. A few days ago a Wood Pigeon was perched on top of it and I couldn't help thinking ... some people have a Cuckoo Clock .... I've got a Pigeon Clock.

Wood Pigeon Clock

Time to go and chop up some more peanuts as that feeder is getting a bit low.
Enjoy your wildlife watching.

RSPB Summer Garden Wildlife Survey

I only found out this morning about the RSPB Summer Garden Wildlife Survey while watching the TV at breakfast time. Like the Spring survey they are asking for an hour of our time to note what wildlife appears in the garden during any period of one hour during this week. (8 - 14th June) Details can be found on the RSPB site. You can click on the above link to go straight there.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Honey Visits the Pond + Garden Birds Feeding

Last night Honey visited the paved area by herself. She didn't stay there for very long - about a minute during all the time I was watching.

About twenty minutes after that I let Bobby out in the back garden for his last look round. He had hardly stepped out of the door before he was making a beeline for the pond waterfall and climbed up on the raised flower bed next to it. From about forty feet away he had heard the faint sounds of a Hedgehog. I went over to have a look and there was Honey on the side of the waterfall looking at the water. I have never seen her use the bowl of water I put out and had wondered where she went to drink. Now I know. Henry always drinks from the bowl. Honey would have had to climb to get where she was as there is no slope up to that raised bed. I have heard that Hedgehogs are good climbers. Unfortunately I hadn't taken a camera with me and for once she didn't run away.

This morning, for the first time for quite a few days, I set the camcorder up in the kitchen to see what was going on. Here is a compilation of some of the usual visitors tucking in to whatever was on offer:

Female Blackbird
Juvenile finch - but not sure which
Male Chaffinch
Adult Starling
Fledgling Starlings

I am always fascinated at the way the finches strip the outer shell from Sunflower seeds without losing the kernel.

The most difficult to capture was the Magpie. It came many times but as soon as I just raised my hand to start the video it flew away but I finally managed to catch it unawares.

Saturday, 6 June 2009


Very little been going on here these past few days - indoors anyway. My worst ever attack of gout has meant hours of boring time sat with my foot up watching the idiot lantern in the corner of the room.

Life is just as hectic as normal outside. Plenty of regular visitors to the feeders including the inevitable Jackdaw.


Most of the juvenile Starlings are now having to feed themselves as they arrive with hardly an adult in sight. Life is at least becoming more peaceful in that direction. This morning a juvenile Blackbird chased off a juvenile Starling, actually catching up with it in the air and plucked out a feather. The juvenile Blackbird returned to the beam which supports the feeders and spat out one grey feather. I could almost see the look of disgust on its face.

The night before last I could hear a Tawny Owl out and about but didn't manage to spot it.

Henry and Honey visited the paved area at different times just before bedtime last night and Bobby was so pleased to see both of them when he went outside. He was wagging his tail like mad as he went for a closer look. The past few nights they had moved on by the time Bobby was allowed out and I could see he looked really disappointed when he couldn't hear them. This seems to have become the highlight of his night expeditions.

Now I'm impatiently waiting for the medication to bring my foot back to its normal size so I can get back to observing the goings on outdoors.

Black Velvet

During our, very slow, afternoon walk Bobby spotted what I first thought was a pile of jet black feathers. When he had finished investigating I could see it was the black velvet coat of a dead mole. It looked uninjured so it is a mystery as to what killed it. (Both photos were taken with the camera in my mobile phone)

Bobby finds a Mole


Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Coal Tits, Jackdaws and Silence

I have been quite surprised to see that one of the recent constant visitors to the ground feeder has been a Coal Tit. Probably a pair as sometimes one arrives a few seconds after another has left. I never saw them feed on the lawn but they seem to like the feeding tray a lot. Coal Tits are easily recognised by their tiny size and that 'badger stripe' on the back of the head.

Coal Tit

This one, caught as it left, seems to have a large thick beak but closer examination shows that it is making off with a black Sunflower seed. They never stay to eat, just fly in, collect what they want and leave for the safety of nearby bushes straight away.

Coal Tit

Seen every day now will be one or more Jackdaws. They are extremely nervous birds, always on the lookout for danger. One quick glimpse of me with those white shiny eyes and they are away like a shot. To think it was January when I saw one in the garden for the first time. Now they are daily regulars, sometimes joining the Rooks on the lawn or trying to find a way to raid the fat ball feeders.


They grab food so fast I am beginning to wonder whether the bulge under the beak is a place to store food in the same way as the Rooks. I have read that adults have been observed sharing food.


A piece of video of Jackdaws gathering seed from the lawn. There are two episodes and as they were taken on different days they are probably different individuals.

The second, close up, section shows off the leathery black legs of the Jackdaw. They really do dig deep to find the seeds, sometimes pulling up tufts of grass in the process. The sound on the second section is of those pesky Starlings again.

Silence is Golden

As we came back from the afternoon walk, instead of seeing the normal couple of dozen Starlings I was greeted with the sight of a couple of score all heading towards my tall leylandii. I though I was in for a very noisy late afternoon. Having dumped the bit of shopping I unlocked the back door to have a look. Not a bird moving and only the sound of one lone Sparrow. All the Starlings were very still in the tree. Even the youngsters were perfectly quiet!


Looking around the sky I spotted what appeared to be a Sparrow Hawk hovering high up about a quarter of a mile away. Needless to say by the time I fetched the camera it had vanished from sight but the beautiful silence continued for five to ten minutes more. Even the Sparrow had fallen silent. Every bird kept quite still in its resting place. Slowly the bravest flew from their perches. Some Starlings went on their way but the usual gang came down to feed and deafen me again. All was back to normal.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

The Waiting Game and a Loud Snuffle

Yesterday was that day most motorists dread - MOT day! It was a question of dropping off the car at 8.30 a.m. for that and a full service and then staying within earshot of the phone, just in case..... I put the phone in the kitchen where I could hear it and spent some time in the garden. Another waiting game was by the pond waiting for anything interesting to appear as I had the camcorder on its tripod at the ready. Not a lot of activity all told but a few episodes made their way on to the DVD.

Three appearances of a Common Newt
A Giant Pond Snail
A Dunnock watching from a small tree just feet away from me
Some miniature bullrushes waving in the breeze
A bee visiting an Iris growing as a pond marginal.

A better view of the Iris which has opened so rapidly as it was just a bud two days before. This is the same Iris but different cameras record different shades of colour!


It was impossible to film a Waterboatman as they were darting about everywhere so I had to make do with a sill photo. You can clearly see the elongated legs it uses to scull across the water as it lives its life floating on its back.

Water Boatman

For those who have been following the progress of the juvenile Blackbird - it continues to spend many hours in and around my garden. It has become my one ally in trying to keep the noisy Starlings at bay. This is especially so with the ground feeder. I have often seen this young bird chase adult Starlings away.

Juvenile Blackbird Protecting His Seeds

At long last I managed to get a sound recording of Henry doing his snuffling act. Last night both Hedgehogs appeared at the same time on the paved area. Honey spent a lot of her time moving backwards as Henry grabbed most of the mealworms and crushed peanuts I had scattered.

Later on when Bobby went out for his last tour of the gardens he had his usual careful listen round and then went over to the side fence near the conservatory. He had heard Henry who was the other side of the fence amongst the weeds. In fact both Hedgehogs were there and I could only see Honey but Henry could be heard quite clearly. Luckily I had the Sony mp3 recorder in my shirt pocket so I crouched down, with Bobby looking over my shoulder to see what I was up to, and managed to get the recording. I have added that sound to the bit of compilation video of them both last night.

More photos and video of hedgehogs can also be found on Shirl's Gardenwatch. Some lovely colour footage has just been added along with video of various young birds.

Oh, yes, the car did pass its MOT so that is over for another twelve months. I had thought briefly of trading in my eleven year old Mitsubishi Carisma for a new car but from what I have seen on various consumer programmes and what the garage owner was telling me about some of the new cars he looks after I am better off with my reliable, well built oldie. After all, it is only just broken in as it hasn't done 60,000 miles yet!

Monday, 1 June 2009


The two Hedgehogs continue to visit the garden each evening. Last night I only saw Honey. I can tell by her size and by the fact that she ran away at full speed when I went out to try to get some still photos of her. Henry normally stands his ground and waits until I go away so he can resume eating. Honey is having a fine time finding the dried mealworms I had scattered amongst the crushed peanuts.

I still haven't managed to record the loud snuffling which only seems to be made by Henry. I have tried several searches to find out what the sound indicates. It depends which site you read as to what the meaning is. Two places I found which tell of several sounds Hedgehogs make are here and here.

A very interesting blog I found is Hog Blog with many terrific pictures and videos of Hedgehog visitors to a garden. If you are interested in observing them then it is well worth a visit. There I saw activity similar to that seen here where Hedgehogs face each other nose to nose. You will see some quite aggressive behaviour where Hedgehogs charge and bulldoze others out of the way. Not the cuddly, if prickly, creatures we normally think of. There is definitely more to Hedgehog behaviour than meets the eye!

I am still debating whether I have a pair here or an older adult and one of the offspring I saw last year. The snuffling would suggest that it could be more a 'keep away from my territory' than a 'is it time to make babies' type of communication.
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