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Pond life in January


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As a naturalist and conservationist I don't see magpies as pests. They're predators that's all. And predators have young to feed as well.

 

Nature needs predators as otherwise we'll be overrun with blackbirds and robins. Nature sees to it that there's plenty of songbirds - that's why they breed in such numbers.

 

We may prefer songbirds to predators but who are we to judge?

 

In other words there's a balance. Almost always when the balance is upset the culprit is man - the biggest predator of all!

:clap3: Quite agree but in the wild there is cover for the song birds and their nests. Unfortunately there isn't much "wild" left, just nice tidy gardens for the song birds to nest in which makes it easy for the magpies to find the nests. The tits are OK because they nest in the boxes, the robins do sometimes but blackbirds etc don't stand a chance so we need to "help" them. Someone wiser than myself once said, "if you save everything, you conserve nothing", very true. The magpie cull will continue, discretely of course. :clap3:

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bit tounge in cheek Norm, please excuse me:   Neil Bryant13 hours ago Attending Angling Trust's England Home Nations and World sea teams as a selection meeting today in Gosport. Wishing good luck

errrm how can it be conservation if your newts eat them all?

Strange you should mention this, I was asked to manage the boat team for S. Africa but I declined. The boat team is a clic and you have to be one of the boys and an EFSA member to get in if I remember

:( Back to the newts, absolutely fantastic hatch but no mosquito lava to complement the daphna I put in as there are so many newt tadpoles the daphna can't breed quick enough. There are midges and mosquitoes flying over the water but no eggs or lava, it's costing me a fortune to feed them all. :(

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:( Back to the newts, absolutely fantastic hatch but no mosquito lava to complement the daphna I put in as there are so many newt tadpoles the daphna can't breed quick enough. There are midges and mosquitoes flying over the water but no eggs or lava, it's costing me a fortune to feed them all. :(

:clap3: Mosquitoes laying eggs now so more food available, saving me some money. Just caught a magpie acting like a heron on my "intermediate" newt pond, he's now fox food, they have some uses. :clap3:

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:clap3: After catching the magpie at my intermediate pond I thought I'd better check there were some left. Looks like I caught it in time, only a few missing, lucky as once the word got round they'd of all been eaten. I never thought I'd have to guard newts against magpies. :clap3:

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:clap3: After catching the magpie at my intermediate pond I thought I'd better check there were some left. Looks like I caught it in time, only a few missing, lucky as once the word got round they'd of all been eaten. I never thought I'd have to guard newts against magpies. :clap3:

:clap3: All newts now transferred to main pond. There were a lot more smooth and palmate young than I thought, the eggs must have been in the weed I brought in. Some were a bit on the small side, probably the "runts of the litter" or the first hatched beat them to the food. Well, they're in the pond now so they'll have to compete for food, or become food. :clap3:

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:clap3: Saw a frog in the pond the day the ice thawed a couple of weeks ago, now just seen a pair of frogs, paired up already, is it a good sign? Unfortunately my new neighbour likes gardening so her garden is neat and tidy now, no "wild bits" for the frogs, and newts to live in so the frogs may struggle in the future as my garden has resident hedgehogs. Haven't fully cleared the muck from the pond again this year as the weather and a bad shoulder and arm have slowed me down. :clap3:

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In my pond there are masses of frogspawn which has arrived over the last few days. Counted over 20 frogs fornicating this morning

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The two best times to go fishing are when it's raining and when it's not

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:cry: My frogs are definitely getting less and less each year. Probably down to a few things. 1. More tadpoles eaten by more newts, a victim of my own success. 2. More predation of frogs by cats, hedgehogs and foxes, not a lot I can do about that. 3. More cats and foxes in area now and less cover in neighbouring gardens for them to hide and feed. Must try to get some toads or spawn as not much eats them. :cry:

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