Country diary: Achvaneran

Guardian: My study is away from the house, which enables me to look out from the largest window to the pond below. The pond is large with two small islands and we had it dug out 22 years ago. Last week I watched a female wild mallard trying to control her ducklings as they darted here and there looking for seeds or insects. She had nested on the side of the burn at the back of the pond and had raised eight ducklings. Gradually the hooded crows have taken their toll and yesterday she was left with only ......

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