One Swallow does not make a Summer

Thankfully there is still water in the well and the pond. The birds love the pond and all the trees, wild flowers and other plants love that there is water deep within the ground. We have had the highest temperatures on record for June in Spain and also in our area but there are now cooler nights. Seville has faced temperature in the 40s much earlier than normal. Young swifts have been falling out of nests in the heat.

Among the Navasola summer visitors are red-rumped swallows. Can you just detect the red in this strong little bird that survived striking fast onto our window? There are plenty of swifts around the monument of Castano De Robledo and here the temperatures have not reached 40 plus yet. This should have given these young a chance to fly out of an overheated nest. In order to keep these amazing migratory birds off the threatened lists their young must not just survive the early heatwaves here which have forced them out of their nests before they are ready but they must fly thousands of miles within weeks of leaving the nest. Lots of insect food is needed to help grow muscle strength too. And yet again there has been some glyphosate spraying of verges poisoning not just the wild flowers but all the surrounding insects and those that fly into the area.

For the young wolves in the north of Spain there have been raging wildfires in one of the highly populated but endangered wild Iberian wolf regions in the Sierra Culebra. Just the wrong time as the young wolves might not have the ability to move far from their dens to get away from fire and smoke.

And the good news. The European Union has just agreed a robust plan for the restoration of Nature. Biodiversity strategy for 2030 – Environment –

The European Commission’s proposal for a Nature Restoration Law is the first continent-wide, comprehensive law of its kind. It is a key element of the EU Biodiversity Strategy which calls for binding targets to restore degraded ecosystems, in particular those with the most potential to capture and store carbon and to prevent and reduce the impact of natural disasters.

And I have finished War and Peace. An epic and an insight into Tolstoy’s mind and Russian issues in the 19th Century. But has helped me understand a little more about the awful war raging in the Ukraine.

And for the first time in years I have read a book I could not put down. I read Bewilderment by Richard Powers within a day. And was star and earth struck. The book beautifully describes how a scientist searches for life way out in the stars while his son struggles to deal with the knowledge that life on our planet is threatened with extinction. The boy feels the loss of many species that have already gone forever. He draws them and wants to save what we have left. His father creates stories of possible life on faraway planets.

And recovered from Covid. So far no long term effects but was really tired and wiped out.

So the glass is still half full. There is still time to act and save our wonderful world.

An attempt at drawing water with light and shade with wild scabious.

We need lots more swallows to make a summer and a planet full of different life forms to make a better future.

Lets hope these EU actions will lead the way.

With best wishes and blessings from Navasola

25 thoughts on “One Swallow does not make a Summer”

  1. I know it’s been so long since I’ve visited. My own blog is pretty much a ghost town these days but I did enjoy your photos and narrative of the state of affairs in your area. Across the U.S. there are record-breaking high temperatures also which of course will have a detrimental effect not only on humans but wildlife of all kinds too. There is so much everywhere that needs our full attention to turn around and set on a better path. Thanks for giving me a glimpse into your beautiful world and I do hope that the wildlife there will rally and be okay. My best to you, Gayle.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. So lovely to hear from you Gayle. I too only just manage a post a month and very little poetry this year. But am listening to Stephen Fry on ‘An Ode Less Travelled’ It really works to listen to issues to do with iamb and meter! Yes, there is a lot to pay attention to and definitely more challenging weather. Water is key to our problems in a rainy part of Spain too. There is hope and a lot of work going on that we don’t hear about. Take care and hope you can bring your beautiful poetry and blog to life again when it is right for you to do so.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you, Georgina. I appreciate your kind compliment. I have found a poetry writing group several years ago so my attention has been with them; it is so nice to have an actual, physical group to write with. I too would like to learn the more technical aspects of writing to improve myself and I like your idea of listening. Maybe that gets in your subconscious better that way?

        I wish you the very best and will watch for further postings of yours as I do love the photos and your informative narrative of your lovely home and surroundings. My best to you! xoxo


      2. Thank you, Gayle and so pleased to keep in touch with you. A ‘real’ writing group is a plus. Yes the technical side is quite enlightening to listen to rather than read and Stephen Fry explains it so well and reads out classic examples in ‘An Ode Less Travelled’. I listen on Audible and have the Kindle version to study. I think he explains how it works and gets into your subconscious too. Of course all with a very British accent!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. We are all experiencing strange weather more and more. For us, less rain than normal and stronger winds but lower temperatures has resulted in amazing roses this year. I have no idea what to do for the best but adapt and change as necessary!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. In terms of resilience, I’m glad to see signs that, slowly but surely, the powers-that-be are beginning to listen to indigenous peoples about how to care for our ecosystems. That’s a practice that’s long overdue.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. It is indeed. Some are noticing. I watched John Kerry speak at the Ocean’s Conference Lisbon. More positives but perhaps too many billions now going into military spending. He offered 15 billion fo Ocean recovery. Now Spain will have to help recovery of the Sierra Culebra and perhaps not allow hunting of these beautiful Iberian wolves. Would be great if you got some photos!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Worrying wildlife news from Spain as from most other places. So hard to mitigate these disasters in the short term. Now then – War and Peace! I had a whole month off in May as I wasn’t going to lug THAT round Europe. But the end is in sight. I can’t say I’ve got many insights about Ukraine from it, even though I feel more clued-up about Russia generally. I will, i truth, be glad to turn the last page. And covid … three months on, I’m still ‘enjoying’ after-effects..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry to hear you still have some covid after effects. But good you have been away. The end of War and Peace was more a historical analysis. Am sure an editor these days would say cut! It is so unfortunate for rare wildlife that their homes go up in fire. We need to give more space but that too is hard. Key now must be to get to carbon zero and keep 1.5.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Amazing artwork, Georgina! I am so sorry to hear about the heat and fires in Spain and the threats to the survival of our winged and four-legged relations (and six and eight-legged ones, too). Thank you for sharing beauty and compassion to counterbalance COVID and climate change threats.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Something about your sketch is extremely captivating 🙂 I caught myself staring at it for a while. Thank you for sharing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sorry to read how seriously the heat has affected the animals in Spain. Most of the birds, ducks, and squirrels I observe where I live in South Florida seek survival from the heat in the shade.
    Climate change is real and that Powers book you read sounds like a realistic scenario for sure.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for reading. I think for many creatures over 40 leads to problems plus need for water that is hard to find. Hope we can all work together to prevent the worst scenarios.


  7. It’s heartbreaking to read of the fires and extreme heat in European countries. This year, where I am in North America, we’ve had brief afternoon rains this summer, but fire danger is always looming. I loved Bewilderment and its beautifully written message is clear. I recommend Overstory, if you haven’t already found it.


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