Category Archives: wild and gardens

Everything outside from gardens and gardening to nature, wildlife, the countryside, sea and sky.

12 ducklings born at Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe #ndevon

It’s been a glorious spring this year, but I don’t think anything provides as big a lift as the arrival of ducklings.

This morning, in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe in North Devon, I heard ducks squabbling down in the East Wilder Brook as it passes under a small bridge. I looked over the fence and saw a mother duck and her fleet of ducklings. Unfortunately, there were three male ducks trying to mate with her, explaining the noise as she fought them off.

Ducklings at Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon in April 2011

Some blurred photos, taken with zoom lens while hanging over a fence with two spaniels on leads . . .

Ducklings at Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon in April 2011

One of the park-keepers said they were born on Sunday. I counted 12. Before I could take any more photos, they swam under the bridge.

Meanwhile, back on the duck pond, this pair were doing some serious courting and a bit more when they weren’t being interrupted by other jealous suitors . . .

Ducks at Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon in April 2011

Expect more ducklings!

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Aphrodisiac qualities of blackcurrants

Our blackcurrant bushes certainly seem to have set the ladybirds going . . .

Ladybirds on blackcurrant leaves in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

They’re at it everywhere . . .

Ladybirds on blackcurrant leaves in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

Fortunately, we don’t take a ‘not in my back yard’ approach . . .

Ladybirds on blackcurrant leaves in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

. . . as we hope it’ll work up their appetite for eating aphids.

Meanwhile, a bee decided to ignore these goings-on by drinking . . .

Bee drinking from apple blossom in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

. . . from the apple blossom . . .

Bee drinking from apple blossom in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

. . . while a robin landed on the fence looking very pleased with itself . . .

Robin with insect in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

He’d got a takeaway in his beak . . .

Robin with insect in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

It looked like an insect, but I couldn’t tell exactly . . .

Robin with insect in garden in Ilfracombe, North Devon

It was certainly eat, drink and be merry in our garden this lunchtime.

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Ladybirds and bees busy on the blackcurrant bushes

This morning I spotted quite a few ladybirds on our two blackcurrant bushes.

Ladybird on blackcurrant bush

I hope they are feeding off any aphids and pests. I can see why they love the blackcurrant bushes as the flowers are wonderfully delicate.

Blackcurrant flowers

As well as the ladybirds, there were quite a few beed feeding off the flowers, although they would not keep still enough for me to get a photo so I just snapped the ladybirds.

Ladybird on blackcurrant bush

I did catch this bee feeding on the heather flowers.

Bee feeding on blackcurrant bush

And just had to snap the bluebells all coming into flower.

Bluebell flowers

There’s so much going on in the garden at this time of year.

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Apple blossom opens up this morning

In the garden, our two apple trees change daily . . .

Apple blossom in Ilfracombe, North Devon

This morning the apple blossom opened up . . .

Apple blossom in Ilfracombe, North Devon

I hope the number of flowers means we will get lots of fruit this year!

Apple blossom in Ilfracombe, North Devon
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Bluebells and blossom in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe #ndevon

I have to take my camera because there is something new every day.

This morning I saw bluebells flowering in Bicclescombe Park in Ilfracombe, North Devon . . .

Bluebells in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon

The magnolias are also blooming too in a variety of colours . . .

Magnolias in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon
Magnolias in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon
Magnolias in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon
Magnolias in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon

It’s a wonderful spring for blossom. All the trees are heavy with petals . . .

Blossom in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon
Blossom in Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe, North Devon

All we need now are lots of ducklings on the pond!

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