18th July 2020
The start of the summer holiday definitely helped me to forget about the stress of lockdown, which came from sitting in one room all day doing schoolwork! I visited what is one of my favourite places in the whole of London, Barnsbury, in Islington (I wrote about its history in a previous post, here). I was once again greeted by the old industrial buildings and the late Georgian architecture, as well as the Coots, resilient and resourceful birds. Even when exiting the towpath and entering the immense Barnsbury Estate, there was wildlife, in the form of a Blackbird hopping frantically around a berry bush. When I returned to the Canal through a circular walk, Canada Geese swam gracefully towards the Islington Tunnel, and a huge Emperor Dragonfly buzzed enthusiastically around the wilder part of the Canal, next to the London Wildlife Trust's Camley Street Natural Park; this urban nature reserve is currently closed, though I hope to visit in the future. A short, but memorable afternoon.
22nd July 2020
I returned to the splendid Warren Farm, where it was brilliant to bump into Neil Smith, the local meteorologist. The meadow did not have many visitors, though unfortunately somebody walked into the long grass, causing at least six Skylarks to shoot up into the air in confusion. The acid grassland habitat was teeming with Linnets and Goldfinches; in the old oak tree, there were a dozen Mistle Thrushes; and the alarm calls of Little Owls could be heard along the canal. This reminded me of the paradise that Warren Farm is, and that its diverse range of species needed protecting.