It is hard to believe that it is August already! Where is this year going? Although I feel like the last few months have raced by, when I look back to the start of the year, it seems distant in many ways. My original reason for starting a nature diary was to encourage myself to get outside more often in an attempt to improve my mental health. My outlook has undoubtedly improved since last year. Even though I cannot attribute this solely to engaging with the natural world, I am confident that it has played a significant part in the healing process.
This month we have had a lot of variety in the weather. Along with cancelled barbecues and a break from watering my plants on the roof, we have had some long warm evenings and beautifully sunny days. On these days I have recorded some brilliant nature memories, and I hope you enjoy them too!
The butterflies this month have been amazing! In my diary, I have recorded many sightings, including Peacocks, Red Admirals, Meadow Browns and even a Painted Lady! One of my diary entries reads ‘spent several minutes trying to guide butterflies out of the polytunnels at work today…with little success’ - they seem to find their way out on their own in the end.
Butterflies are one of my favourite insects to sketch, as they are so delicate and have such detailed wings. I was also quite sad to find a dead Red Admiral on the pavement while cycling back from work but decided to bring it home so that I could draw it up close.
Baby Moorhens Update
The pair of Moorhens at work have managed to raise four of their chicks! They are almost the same size as the parents now and are often paddling about in the pond together. The funniest moments are when they decide to explore outside of the water in the surrounding grass. They have such long legs that they look very out of place, and regularly tumble down the slippery bank back into the water in a rather ungraceful manner.
Bees have featured a lot in my nature diary; I love to watch them going about their work. When we first moved into our flat in Bristol last October, there was very little up on the roof terrace. In an attempt to attract wildlife, I planted some cornflower and poppy seeds. I also have tomatoes and strawberries growing up there and have recently moved our little orange tree outside for the summer. It is in flower at the moment, and it smells amazing! As soon as everything came into flower, bees started appearing. It is amazing how quickly wildlife moves in when it is given the space.