November starts with a bang, quite literally, with Bonfire Night providing fun family activities. The cold nights are becoming longer and there’s nothing better than coming into the warmth after being outside, although the unseasonably mild days are so far delaying that feeling. Remember: if you have any bonfires always make sure to check for any hedgehogs that may try to make a home in the wood beforehand.
November is the perfect month for bird watching, with thousands of birds flying in to our estuaries and wetlands for the winter. Look out for in particularly Wigeon, Teal and Shovelers in these coastal locations. One of the most spectacular natural occurances also happen around now, when huge swarms of starlings dance and swoop in spectacular fashion that’s almost hypnotic. Elsewhere, robins and song thrushes will be singing all day long and will provide a melody in your playground all day long. Be sure to leave seeds and water for your local birds, clearing any ice that may build up.
Many animals are now starting hibernation, such as frogs and toads, although some animals avoid this by reducing activity, such as badgers, who store up body fat in the summer months.
Keep clear any fallen leaves and if possible you can reuse these in a compost for fertiliser in the new year once rotted down. You could even make a compost heap yourself by using pallets- five are enough for a basic compost heap. Start thinking about what you want to start planting in the coming year as some plants require work now. There are some late crops also available such as cauliflower, and take cuttings from fruit bushes for a cheap way to expand your area. A handy tip is to wrap grease bands around fruit trees to prevent pests from climbing the trunks and causing damage.
Whatever November brings us, there still plenty to be enjoying in your playground and garden areas.