Sunday, 18 November 2012

Nothing unusual in seeing a mown field except that these Low Woodside hectares between the canal and the river were cut on the last weekend of October – exceptionally but not unprecedentedly late and a consequence of Airedale’s wettest summer in living memory, which has brought havoc to livestock farmers. Dairy herds have been inside during the summer, depleting silage stored for winter, and feed costs have soared on the back of weather-inflicted grain shortages.
Other seasonal distortions include curlews flying over the Hutter Hill and Tar Topping fields in November, by when normally they would have returned to the coast, a primrose in flower in December in Snowden Ghyll Wood and hyacinths still in bloom in a Kent Avenue garden in late September. And who has seen any field mushrooms this autumn?