The Animals and Me

Spring appears to have finally arrived. This will be my last at my work in Glasgow. In October we are scheduled to close and move across the country to Edinburgh. On the face of it there would appear to be little change. Doing the same job in one city instead of another. One difference is that where I work at present is surrounded on all sides by fencing and railway lines, and is in some respects a small nature reserve, an island of animal life in an otherwise urban jungle.

Spring- at last!

Spring- at last!

Over the years I’ve followed the yearly cycles of the birds and animals here. Magpies and sparrowhawks regularly nest here. A family of roe deer live here, side by side with numerous foxes.

Nesting sparrowhawk

Nesting sparrowhawk

The magpies and foxes are probably two of the most interesting. I often put scraps out for the foxes, however the magpies long ago cottoned on to this and usually beat them to it, although their chattering gives them away. The foxes are very inquisitive and I’ve noticed that they like to follow me. When I walk, they follow. When I stop, so do they. I’ve also been able to feed them from up close. A plate of sausages is always hard to resist, for humans and foxes!

Urban fox

Urban fox

At this time of year I start to look out for the new arrivals, usually to be found playing around in the early morning sun, balls stolen from nearby gardens and discarded workmens gloves appear to be their favourites.

It's common to find hoards of toys, some of the foxes favourites.

It’s common to find hoards of toys, some of the foxes favourites.

More elusive are the roe deer, of which there is a small colony here. They are more easily spooked, but it’s still possible to get up fairly close to them, if you move quietly and slowly, and try not to look at them directly.

Roe Deer

Roe Deer

Roe Deer

Roe Deer Buck

Grey squirrel

Grey squirrel

Add into this squirrels, rabbits and an assortment of other birds, and you have a great mix of wildlife, all in a space which you can walk round in ten minutes! I’ll certainly miss the chance just to go outside and sit and watch their antics, so I’ll enjoy it while it lasts.

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