Have you ever looked out of a plane window as you are coming into land in the UK? At Manchester airport especially, you can see the acres and acres of green fields edged in hedgerow after hedgerow.
If it wasn’t for farmers, those hedgerows and all the creatures that live in them would not be there.
When I think of the wildlife at our farm alone, it makes me so thankful that we maintain our land and boundaries to allow countless birds, squirrels and other animals make their home here.
At the moment, I keep seeing a heron and a barn owl. The farmer had told me about the barn owl and I was dying to see it and, as I got something out of my car at dusk one night I saw it fly up the drive-looking for dinner I imagine. I was so pleased I had seen it.
I never get tired of the different types of wildlife here. I do get tired of not getting a photo of some of the birds though. The resident heron is very camera shy.
I think a lot of people don’t realise the sheer amount of wildlife that is attracted and makes it home on farms. We have barn owls, bats, newts, frogs, bees. Not to mention all of the birds we have here.
Miles and miles of hedgerows are home to birds, insects and mammals like mice, voles and squirrels.
We see wild rabbits and hares along with moles, bats and even deer on occasion.
We have a pond on our farm which has fresh water mussels in it and most nights in summer, frogs and toads visit our garden.
Farmers trim the hedges and upkeep the various parts of their land. We have several areas where we let the flora and fauna run wild and leave it to do what it does best-grow naturally.
The birds I’ve seen here are nothing like the ones I see in my mum and dad’s garden. There are the usual garden birds here and the crows which I am not particularly fond of.
It is the ones I haven’t seen much of before which make me feel all warm inside. Chaffinches and Goldfinches. Blue tits, harriers and even the odd pheasant.
Farming has taken place in the UK for thousands of years and, with the current housing crisis, it is more important than ever to ensure farms are kept farming. Hedgerows and trees on the farming landscape may have been manmade but their importance should not be underestimated.
Farmers care about their land and take a big interest in its up keep so next time you look out of a plane window, think of all the life happening on farm land-not just crops and farm animals. Wildlife too.