Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Constants

We have been lucky. 
Only a few miles East but 600 feet above the flood plain near St Asaph, The village is safe from the floods which seem to be taking taking priority in the National News.
The land has taken a battering, and on a tiny domestic level so have a few of the animals, as this year has been the wettest and the most miserable on record.
Yesterday, I noticed that the guinea fowl looked miserable and cowed against the rain. Unlike the other animals, they alone have braved the elements 24/7 without any respite, and after a summer and autumn where they have been drenched and cold most days, the poor birds were looking tired, and out of condition.
I mentioned to my FIL (father-in-law) that I was worried about the male guinea, Hughie the most, as he looked the weakest. and although both birds made it to their roosting tree last night, I worried about their future as yet another dreadful and blustery night lashed the field.
This morning both birds had gone.

I walked the Churchyard and the field at dawn and found two telltale patches of speckled feathers. Obviously Hughie, had been unable to roost effectively in the rainstorm last night and  the had been taken from the ground, sometime during the night. His mate Ivy, who looked fitter and healthier than he did was no where to be seen, a fact I thought surprising.
Idly, I wondered if she had come down off her tree, (which she had been safe from predators for several years now ) to be with Hughie at the end. Perhaps  loyalty to her mate had been her last in-vain gesture.
The dog fox would have taken both birds, without even a pause.

We are lucky here. We have had no floods, no evacuation from our home and none of the Nation's news teams clogging up the wet roads in order to report on a local interest story..... There has been no drama to really talk about....
All we have had is just to sad little patches of feathers marking the death of a couple of semi wild birds who sat as constant security guards over a small wet field in our corner of Wales for a few short years.

I know it sounds stupid, but before I packed up my FIL to take him down to the station for his long trip back home, I stopped briefly in the rain and shed just one tear for two old loyal birds who couldn't cope with yet another wet , cold and miserable season

33 comments:

  1. I'm saddened to hear this news. We get so attached to our animals and feathered friends. You can talk all about nature taking it's course but the strong devouring the weak just doesn't make any sense to me. Damn the fox!

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    1. not the fox's fault linda
      just a product of a cold wet summer.... I am surprised the guineas have lasted as long as they have given the conditions

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  2. Very sad..it must be hard when you have so many animals attached to you. The unfortunate ebb and flow of nature.

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  3. How sad to lose two birds in such a miserable way in miserable weather.
    I often wonder how the birds and animals cope with awful weather - it must be very hard for a lot of them.

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  4. that is so sad John. It shows the constant wet weather depresses everyone and makes everyone more vunerable.

    Gill in Canada

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  5. None of us wants the countryside to be Fox free, but we rightly get peeved when they dine chez nous. Poor birds; I hope they didn't suffer too much.

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    1. like I said cro.... fox was just hungry
      it's the weather I am peeved at

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  6. Oh I feel very sad - poor waterlogged birds.

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  7. Sad to hear of their demise. I know you will miss them. You must acquire some keets in the spring for alarms.

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  8. It's not stupid. I'd have done just the same. Sorry John, Jx

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  9. Sorry to hear about your Guineas

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  10. The circle of life.
    Jane xx

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  11. So sorry, John. My eyes are damp. I hope springs comes early and warm for Wales.

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  12. Makes me a shed a tear, too. It shall be much quieter in that corner now, for a season at least.

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  13. Sorry to hear about the loss of your birds, John. No matter how often things like this happen, it still bites at the heart doesn't it. I am being more careful about putting our hens away now we are coming into winter. They spent last winter roosting up the fig tree, but during spring we lost several of our best layers to the fox. Now everyone has to go inside the hut, which is not the best accommodation to have, but at least it keeps everyone safe. x

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  14. Sorry to hear about your birds. The floods in Waled made it to US national news last night - for about five seconds. The couple of shots that they showed looked terrible...

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  15. Oh John,
    All that I can say is that I would be a hopeless mess if I had to deal with everything that you deal with but I'm sure that the good outweighs the bad.
    Bloody weather !!!! XXXX

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  16. I'm so sorry to read John, we do become attached to our animals and the hurt is real when it's time for them to leave.
    Rotten weather.
    ~Jo

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  17. How very sad. My eyes have welled up. The rotten weather conditions have had a lot to answer for this year.

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  18. Sorry these two characters are gone, they added some fun to your stories in the past.

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  19. Oh no! I'm sorry :( I loved hearing about Hughie and Ivy's escapades.

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  20. I'm sorry about Hughie and Ivy, John.

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  21. It's all relative in the big scheme of things John. All the best to all of you!

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  22. I am sorry, John.

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  23. I hope the weather gives you a break soon.

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  24. Sorry to hear this, John.

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  25. Bloody, bloody cruel weather. So sorry John, and not stupid at all to mourn their loss.

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  26. Foxes are opportunists; heres hoping the sky "faucets" turn off - thats enough water now!

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  27. John: Maybe I'm stupid, but what's a "DOG fox"?

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    1. scott
      its a large male fox

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