By CleanSteve

A heron's departure from our ash tree

I spotted the heron perched high in the ash tree at the bottom of the garden. It isn't unusual but I haven't seen one there for some weeks. The heron flies up The Horns valley behind our house to a small artificially dammed pond about a quarter of a mile further up the Lime Brook. There it hunts in a very quiet spot. But its main haunt is on the River Frome a few hundred yards downstream from our house.

I think it stops in this ash tree for a rest, but I wouldn't be surprised if it vets the back gardens of our street for any fish in garden ponds. In fact soon after this departure heading down over the back gardens I saw that it had returned, possibly with a fuller belly.

I rather like having such a notable bird visit, but I don't think the other birds are of the same opinion. I spotted crows, jackdaws, magpies and squirrels getting up close and personal. The crows seem to have a peck at the heron's feet, but they rarely force it away. I think its long sharp beak is quite an effective defence.

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