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Life is good!

What a perfect day to be amongst nature. I was out all morning walking the forest heading out by 6.30am. At this time the forest is awakening, the dawn chorus is still in full volume and everything smells sweet and fresh. I saw the local tawny owl heading home to her roost after a night of hunting and a shrew took advantage of her turning in for the day as it dashed across the path ahead so fast, it was impossible to see its legs move! As I walk the woods nesting sites gave themselves away with demanding twitters of hungry mouths.

Walking across the heathland ponies were quick on the hoof in a spring-like mood and a herd of fallows laid up in the morning sun safely in the distance.

As the morning went on and the landscape heated up the wildlife changed from singing birds and relaxing fallows to damselflies gently rattling by and butterflies fluttering in the dappled glades of the trees. I was also delighted to see a muntjac sniffing the hard, dusty ground ahead of me as I trod quietly to go unnoticed. When lunchtime neared and the sun burnt strong in the sky, the landscape quietened apart from the persistent, distant cuckoo and the expectant greater spotted woodpecker chick 'chip, chip, chipping' from a hole in an old oak tree. (Which you can hear in the video.)

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