Spring’s Bounty – What to look for in Your Garden

by Walter Titties

Spring is a glorious time in Britain, and as the sun extends its working day and our hedges and gardens come to bloom we all begin to keep an eye out for those scrabbling squirrels, bouncy birds and fluttering butterflies. I am here to tell you what to keep watch for this year.

Firstly, for a magnificent rare sight, those of you near Nuneaton should grab your binoculars and just in case, rifles, to see a magnificent visit of deinonychus. Once thought extinct for millions of years, these raptors are sure to keep keen twitchers on their toes or else they will likely disembowel you with theirs. Measuring up to 11 foot from snout to tail, they are surprisingly stealthy for their size, so keep those eyes peeled in the undergrowth and keep out of the way for safety.

For less exotic fauna, keep an eye out in yours or your neighbour’s garden and see if you can spot any Great Tits. Always a favourite for British wildlife watchers, there can be no sight more joyful than eyeing a pair of great tits bouncing around and frolicking in the sun. Many people do their best to get close to the adorable things, so if you are trying to get close to tits, be careful not to get yourself too snagged up in the bush.

Those of you in East Anglia should pop out in late May to try to spot Osborne’s amassive bustard. Diminutive in stature (hence amassive) this rare bustard was named after our very own chancellor of the exchequer and occasionally visits us from off-shore where it lays its nest eggs.

If you are in London for the May bank holiday be sure to try to get a glimpse of the rat hunt. This rare event begins with the annual rat race. When the sun shines, the rats come out in force to find new trouble to cause and environments to disagree with. These rats have previously caused problems as innocent protestors following the same route throw things at them and accidentally smash shop windows. Of course, once the rats are out, the pigs will follow. London’s population of feral pigs have been unpopular for many years, mostly due to a documentary a few years back exposing them as a bunch of massive racists. However, nothing can be a more magnificent spectacle of the hunt than seeing them surrounding the running rats (an action known as ‘kettling’) and proceeding to batter and consume them. Well worth a watch, it is the urban equivalent of when sperm whales herd fish.

Finally, to the realm of the arthropods and the fairweather fly which will be making its return at the first rains of early June. It will buzz around in confusion, wondering where summer has gone despite it being 30 degrees and sunny most of the time. They tend to come out when it is a bit cooler, cloudy or wet. They are an annual mainstay in Britain, and put on quite a display. Be sure to check them out.

There are many more lovely wildlife opportunities this spring, and if you go to www.wild.life/uk/whattosee/whereiam.php you can find what spectacles there will be near you. Until next time, this is Walter Titties wishing you a happy spring.

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