Sunrise 07:20 Sunset18:32
When I’m out with Tilly early in the mornings I never know what I’m going to see on our walks round the lanes and hills near home and it’s not all wildlife. Autumn is taking hold now and the leaves are changing rapidly, I do hope we get some nice autumn colours this year.
I’m not particularly worried about walking through cows but some can be a little frisky, the ones I met in the images below as I come from Dove Cote farm were very lively and of course they moved to the gate where we wanted to get through, a bit of a dilemma should I retreat and go round Ridgeway lane or go through, Breakfast was calling so I decided on the latter I must admit both Tilly and I were not happy as they were kicking out but we got through unscathed!
At Dove Cote farm the Peacocks are quite often on the ground in the lane and this male, still without a new tail was walking in front of us one morning, Tilly is not sure what to make of this large bird.
There has been a herd of cows on Hambledon Hill for most of the summer including a bull, I have never been too worried as there is space to get around them and you don’t always see them and they are adults with young. One morning I met them on the bridleway going up to the trig point and I couldn’t get past without getting close but the gate was open half way up but full of cows so again I didn’t want to backtrack so we just went through them and they quietly got out of our way, Phew!
Then there are the encounters with wildlife Tilly watched the Swan on the river but decided to leave it alone, which I was pleased about, she is partial to chasing Squirrels though.
There have also been quite a few young Pheasants roosting near the Stour at Hanford brought in for the shooting season I expect, they give us a start when they fly up from their roost.
The Horses by Melways lane always come for a look, I’m glad they are in a field, I can cope with that.
When we walk Melways lane I always have Tilly on a lead as more often or not there are sheep out from one of the many fields, I don’t know if she would chase them but it’s not worth the risk. It could be white or the black sheep and this day a couple of the black ones were enjoying the longer grass in the lane.
Last but not least the Goats at Bere Marsh Farm, the ladies and their Kids are usually in the barn in the mornings when we pass by but quite often Roonie the large Billy goat is out with his mates, a couple of young males in a paddock. Roonie always looks as though he has been there and done that, very grumpy looking and a bit smelly at this time of the year. I’m not sure if you could call him handsome!
My least favourite encounter is when I decided to go on the pathway up from Shillingstone to Okeford Fitzpaine. I was walking past the farm and this rather large Ridgeback dog came hurtling out at us, Tilly was scared and so was I. I managed to fend him off of Tilly with a lot of shouting and pushing, I wasn’t sure how friendly he was and I assume he guards the farm. I turned back feeling a bit shaken. I don’t want anything to happen to Tilly she has had enough trauma in her young life.