Sunday, May 09, 2010

Cats and wildlife

It is a fact that La Pasera as a natural space has been affected and changed since we came to live here and introduced Gawber and Wentworth, our two cats. Both are very good hunters and there are many times we are presented with a variety of prizes such as lizards, shrews, slow worms, birds and mice to mention few. In spite of the changes imposed by the presence of predators such as the cats, we are experiencing an increase in the numbers and variety of wildlife that we find at La Pasera. We recently discovered tiny toads that are a good indicator that the garden is a good environment for them to reproduce. As the garden matures, the bird population is also becoming more visible. Generally speaking, Asturias is a region where you can hear a wealth of songbirds but they are often difficult to spot amongst the hedges and lush vegetation, however we are hearing and seeing many more birds than what we used to, especially since we created the wildlife pond.

With the cats, we have adopted a "no intervention" policy other than in very few cases. One example is the time when the cats were in the workshop and after noticing a young family of fledging blue tits we kept them there until the young birds had left the garden.
Another example was the other day when a beautiful green lizard was seen in the garden for the first time, unfortunately Gawber discovered it and would have had it if I have not picked it up and put safely away from his eager claws.

I was unable to take a photograph but the following day while on a short walk, I had the opportunity to take these photographs It seems the lizards were warming themselves with the residual heat from the stones when the weather suddenly changed and become overcast and cooler with the north wind. Since we have noticed the lizard is now resident in and around the pond area and bog garden.

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