Visitors drop in for food and a photo opportunity
Mercury readers have been sending in pictures of the wealth of wonderful wildlife that is right at home in their gardens.
John Brown, of Rowlatts Hill, Leicester, sent us in photos of a robin and blue tit after our call for people to submit pictures of wildlife in their gardens.
He said: "The photos were taken in my garden, which is not only in a built-up area but also very small, about five metres by five metres.
"It shows that if you put bird-food out on a regular basis you will get visitors."
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Valerie and David Noakes, whose Enderby home backs on to Jubilee Park, provide a bird buffet containing different diets for different species – with hand-crafted small-mesh-protected feeders made by David to deter thieving squirrels.
Apart from the female great spotted woodpecker photographed by Valerie, their garden also attracts gold finches and gold crests, Europe's smallest native bird.
David said: "The woodpeckers come every day. I make my own food mixes to cater for the type of birds, using crushed sunflower hearts, meal worms and moistened down with sunflower oil.
"The trouble we have with feeding the birds isn't with squirrels, but sparrowhawks which come in all the time to prey on the others."
He said they also get the occasional visiting mink from the river but had never had any problem with them.
Another wildlife haven drew Johnny Wesson, 83, to move to Leicestershire two-and-a-half years ago to live in Anstey, near Bradgate Park.
He managed to take this photo of a robin feeding its chicks in a tractor shed at St Margaret's Bowling Club, in Birstall.
"It was a bit of a cheat. I had to hide, video the robin with a maggot in its beak and took the photo from the footage."
"Bradgate Park is a fantastic place to take photos.
"One of the stags is very obliging. He just about poses for you."
E-mail pictures of what is in your garden to:
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