The winter months brought some of the wettest and windiest on record. As March came to a close the weather changed from almost constant wind and rain, to bright clear skies and plenty of sunshine. April has seen only a small number of days with any rain at all. With the change in weather the plants and animals are beginning to return.
The swifts, swallows and cuckoos began to arrive around mid-April and can be seen and heard around Ardachy. We have sea eagles and buzzards spiralling in the thermals on most days, along with smaller finches, wheatear and song birds nesting. With the lack of visitors, the wildlife is undisturbed and appears to be making the most of the weather. The wildflowers are a little late, but the primrose, bluebells and violets have made an appearance followed by the emergence of honey and bumblebees.
The sunshine has brought out the adders and can be found on the moors. Deer are often encountered on walks in the countryside. The fields are full of new lambs and calves. With the warm and dry weather, the farms look to have started well this year, although we could do with some rain now to allow the grass to bounce. Hopefully there is some return to normality in the not too distant future so business can make something this year. We are currently looking after a pet lamb “Phil”; Alex and the dog have a new friend. Evenings have produced some spectacular sunsets and there have been plenty of blue skies and few clouds. There are worse places to be locked down.