Otters In The Centre Of Town

My wife and I were on our way back from shopping in Andover town centre yesterday when I spotted this otter.  It looked like it had found a shoal of fish.  I had seen two much younger ones in the same place a year or two ago.  On that occasion I never got any photos at all and this time all I had was my Blackberry smart phone so the photographs are not very clear – unfortunately when you zoom in the picture quality deteriorates markedly and when you zoom out the animal is reduced to a tiny spot!

The State Of The Ponds At The Beginning Of The Season

We have three ponds in the garden: a small wildlife pond in the wildlife garden at the top of the garden, a slightly larger ornamental pond (in theory anyway) half way down and the fish pond at the bottom of the garden in between two patio areas.  Both patio areas need relaying as I put the slabs down temporarily and then left them!

Wildlife pond

The wildlife pond is silted up - it is actually too small and I plan to at least deepen it, although I may well enlarge it, this year or next.

Ornamental pond

The ornamental pond is far from ornamental and needs planting from scratch. It is in a hollow after I got over enthusiastic when digging the hole.

Large fish pond

The fish pond was greatly enlarged last year with a huge new filter incorporated. Unfortunately the UV bulb has gone (the device repeatedly gave me a shock anyway) and I plan to add a second filter with new UV lamp as soon as possible. We did once have waterlilies but the koi ate them; ditto all other plants!