We’ve become used to wildlife from the neighbouring copse entering the garden. During the building work, when the fences were down, we’d often come home to deer lying on out on the lawn, a wonderful sight until we began to notice an absence of leaves on the rose bushes. And even now, we still refer to begenia as “the deer plant”, after the leaves were repeatedly stripped each time the deer visited.
This year, pits dug in the borders, and tell-tale muddy paw prints, pointed to badgers in the vicinity; and a few weeks ago we were woken at four in the morning by a right old badger rumpus taking place behind the hedge. It ended with two of them shuffling madcap down the street: a right pair of cheeky monkeys.
There are numerous squirrels, including the one that scampered the full length of the fence with a whole fat ball in its jaws, clearly stolen from a neighbour’s bird feeder.
But for the last two weeks, it’s a new visitor that’s taken the prize for naughtiest animal entering the garden: a sweet, innocent-looking baby bunny, whose parents seem to be using our patch as a crèche.
At first he nibbled grass and was even seen to be eating bindweed in the flower beds (good bunny!). But his tastes have since developed to include young verbena bonariensis plants, hollyhocks, lupin leaves, violets, and ornamental grasses. We’ve got rather used to having him around, but it might be time to attach chicken wire to the bottom of the fence.