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!


  1. Dont you just hate MOT day. Glad it passed John for another year. :)
    Good to hear the juvenile Blackbird is doing well, and a great clip from the pond. That Iris is a beautiful colour.

  2. Great looking Blog,enjoyed my visit.

  3. Thanks Keith. It's always a relief once that expensive bit of paper is in my sticky hands.

    Thank you John. Always nice to have a kind comment and I am pleased your visit was enjoyable.

  4. Brilliant John, I am delighted you finally managed to record this snuffling sound! Great idea to add it to other footage too.

    I have had my night camera on all night and had a couple of sightings but no snuffling on tape yet :-( Hopefully I'll get it one night too - still kicking myself for my missed opportunity with the three hogs snuffling! Oh well...

    Thanks for the mention and link here, I appreciate it. Happy Hog watching :-D

  5. Haha! What a fun post. I loved the newt in your video and the bumble bee on the iris. Plus, listening to all that "snuffing" from the hedgies made me laugh!

  6. Thank you Shirl. I got lucky with the snuffle recording. As we were opposite sides of the fence they were not put off and I could get right down to their level which helped. The surveillance camera I use for watching the Hedgehogs does not have sound so I though I would add the snuffling. It always reminds me of an old steam railway engine chuffing along. I am trying to work out how to get a microphone near where they feed and keep it waterproof.

    You are most welcome to the link - those colour close up pictures of yours are terrific.

  7. Hi Kelly. Thank you. I can watch the Newts for ages as they move around looking for food. The snuffling does sound funny and it goes on for such a long while.

  8. Loved the pond video John and watching the Newt, very cooling in this warm weather! I also enjoyed the hogs snuffling and the blue of the Iris is lovely.

    Glad the juvenile BB is still thriving and nice to see it holding its own with the Starling! I love the pic of the Water Boatman too, such fascinating little creatures.

    Congrats on the dreaded MOT!

  9. Lovely hog video and that familiar snuffling noise!


Thank you for visiting. Hope you enjoyed the pictures. Any comment, or correction to any information or identification I get wrong, is most welcome. John

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