Monday, 17 August 2009
As usual, the summer is going too fast with far too many things to do and keeping up with the blog seems low on the list of priorities. The glorious early summer has given way to a rather more drizzly, dull August which must be very disappointing for our visitors.
Replacing the roof on the Big Shed has been occupying much of James' time but with help from Thomas and a succession of very hard working Wwoofers (Willing Workers on Organic Farms), the job is now 80% complete and we will have a great dry space for timber drying and firewood storage.
Beaver monitoring has taken up quite a bit of time too. Only six of the original eleven beavers currently remain on the release lochs but they have managed to fell significant numbers of trees and have flooded the Coille Bharr walk by building dams. The adult male which had travelled 7 miles north from the release site has been trapped after 10 weeks out of Knapdale. We are told it will be returned to Creag Mhor Loch where it will be home alone - until it heads off again towards the Crinan Canal in the vain hope of finding a mate. For more beaver related information look at www.scottishbeaver.blogspot.com/
We have had our first honey harvest from the bees which have been working hard all summer. The chickens hatched at the end of May have grown quickly and unfortunately rather a lot of them look like cockerels. The garden produce is getting a little overwhelming with courgettes turning into marrows overnight and an abundance of french and runner beans. The strawberry crop was wiped out by a badger which clearly preferred them to slugs. Our Wwoofers have been a great help in keeping the weeds at bay.
The flowers are looking lovely and the buddleia has been covered in butterflies. Painted Ladies, Small tortoiseshell, Red Admirals have all visited but today there were only Peacock Butterflies in evidence. A large dragonfly alighted on a hoe in the garden conveniently posing for my camera. Buzzards wheel overhead and jays screech in the trees. The ospreys will be getting ready for the long flight from Loch Sween to Africa.