Island Life Magazine Ltd December 2008/January 2009 - Page 68

COUNTRYSIDE, WILDLIFE & FARMING countryside news life Compiled by Tony Ridd DO YOU HAVE A COUNTRYSIDE STORY? what to look out for... Winter visiting birds Each winter we play host for many ‘winter migrating’ birds, coming to us to escape the colder, harsher climate of their summer homes. Look out for small flocks of Fieldfares and Redwings, common around hedgerows and gardens. I have already spotted a short eared owl in the hedge by our home, a real treat as there are only a handful of sightings each year. back to nature A countrymans diary Through-out the summer we get envious gazes and comments from people who ‘wish’ they had our job! It is pretty good, whizzing round woodlands and the countryside on quad bikes, driving tractors and generally jollying it up in the sun. Or that’s the impression we like to give! However these ‘envious’, people seem to disappear when the winter months start knocking. And, as I am always saying, winter is our busiest time of the year, daylight is in short supply, but our days seem just as long, often packing up and walking back across muddy fields in torchlight. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not moaning – quite the reverse. I love it, in fact, I can’t get enough of it, if only it could rain everyday… I am embarrassed to say, that I have already got the Landrover stuck in mud, having to wander off to get a tractor to pull it out. I normally save this time consuming stunt for early in the new year. I’m not sure if this is an omen for a wet winter or me thinking I can walk on water? Anyone believing our job was a piece of cake, seek me out, and tell me ‘how lucky I am’ on a Friday evening, when I’m searching through the mud in the dark, looking for the wheel nuts from the quad trailer because it has got yet another puncture! I wouldn’t want to do anything else though… CALL TONY ON 07966 292334 68 The Island's new funky radio station www.wightfm.com