Chasing Toads & Peacocks

I can’t begin to explain how tired I am tonight. It’s a long time since I’ve been this knackered. So where have I been? Absolutely nowhere. Today, with the sun shining and the birds singing I decided to stay in my own garden.

Common Toad

Common toad in my garden

For a while now I’ve been thinking about demolishing an old rockery. Well today was “the day”. Out came my trusty pick-axe, spade, wheelbarrow and gardening gloves and off I went. Six hours later (yes, six hours!) it was done.

Two long-tailed tits have helped to keep me going with their incessant “chattering”. I’m sure they were egging me on. Even the amphibians and butterflies put in an appearance.

This common toad above was very nearly a dead common toad. He must have been hiding in the rockery, and he was very lucky that I saw him just before I put the spade through his squashy little body. I swiftly scooped him up and transported him to a new home in the log pile next to the compost. I’m sure he’s going to be very happy there. He should be, there’s lots of creepy-crawlies.

On one of my frequent trips up and down the garden with the wheelbarrow I also noticed a bright yellow brimstone butterfly flitting around the hedge. He was in the garden on and off for the rest of the day (even meeting up and dancing with another brimstone at one point) but he never settled long enough for me to take his picture.

The peacock butterflies were a different story. By about lunchtime there were at least three sunning themselves on the drive. They didn’t seem to mind me wriggling along on my stomach towards them with my camera, and I managed to get some footage as they opened and closed their wings in the warm spring sunshine.

So the rockery is flattened, the straggly plants are no more, and all the rocks (at least 30!) are piled high against the hedge. What’s next? Well I’m off to plan my wildlife pond. Does anyone know the number of a man with a small mechanical digger?

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9 thoughts on “Chasing Toads & Peacocks

  1. Pingback: First of the new brood butterflies? - Wildlife and Environment Forums

  2. Oh, lovely peacock! I wish we had toads. Though I did see a common newt this morning – it looked tiny (minute, ha ha!) compared to all my big fat frogs.

  3. Kate. Very good… minute 🙂 As I said above, I’m planning a wildlife pond, so I hope to have some newts in a year or two. I wonder how long they take to turn up… I guess it depends who else has a pond in my road. Glad you liked the peacock. I know they are common, but still beautiful. Jane

  4. You exhausted me with your talk of rockery-work! The peacock footage is lovely.

    I got my ear-rings from Britain through e-bay – lovely silver charm-makers.

    Shame you’re not closer to us – diggers large and small are ten-a-penny here!

  5. Hi Dragonstar. I’m glad you like the peacock footage. Made me feel all springy and summery! Love your earrings. Yes, lots of diggers in Ireland… lots of house building. I might have found someone (fingers crossed) or I’m going to bribe my nephew to dig it! Jane

  6. Good luck with the pond Jane, if you’re lucky you may get visitors before the summer is out, don’t forget the “ramp” though so they (and any hedgehogs that fall in) can get out. Tip, head off to your local pond with good wildlife, and fill a gallon container just with water from near the bottom. Add to your pond once complete, you’ll kick start the micro fauna, and micro fauna will encourage the bigger fauna.

    Looking forward to seeing the construction photos. I’ve been fascinated watching Johnny Kingdom building his big wildlife pond.. mind you that took 3 days with a JCB. Will be great to see it develop.

  7. Hi Border Reiver. Thanks so much for your tips on pond building. I can’t wait to get started… but I might have to. Trying to find someone to dig it for me (don’t think my back with manage it) and everyone is busy this time of year. Watch this space! Jane

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