Page 7 - HGS Suburb News 149 - March 2022
P. 7

          OUT & ABOUT

                                                        “Hope”is the                                                    commons, wood-
                                                                                                                        acres of parks,
                                                        thing with feathers                                         cemeteries, allotments,
                                                                                                                      lands, wetlands,
                                                                                                                    gardens and of course a
                                                                                                                    garden suburb. These
                                                         MARIE-CHRISTINE O’CALLAGHAN  parakeets ended up living    green spaces offer a range
                                                                                   in London abound. One of my    of habitats and lots of
                                                             o my absolute amazement,  favourites is that they escaped  opportunities for feeding from
                                                             I saw a green bird in my  during the filming of The African  nuts, seeds, fruit and berries,
                                                         T garden! Now, there is a lot  Queen (1951). While most of the  not to mention the offerings on
                                                         of green in the garden but it is  film was shot on location in Uganda  bird feeders. But, surely, the
                                                         usually in the flora, not the fauna.  and the Congo, about half the film  weather must have been a problem
     The Wolf Moon lit by the rising sun in Meadway
     (Photo: Shelley-Anne Salisbury)                     Birds tend to be brown or black or  was shot at Isleworth Studios in  for such a tropical bird? In fact,
                                                         grey, though the small birds do  Middlesex and the birds were  the parakeets’ native range includes
    The Wolf Moon                                        provide a flash of colour like the  needed to provide local colour,  Nepal so London’s weather is not
                                                                                                             a problem.
                                                         red of a robin’s breast or the blue
                                                                                   although, having watched the film
                                                                                                                Parakeets have now become
                                                         yellow and white of a blue tit but,
                                                                                   parakeets. Another story is that
                                                         to see an exotic apple-green bird  recently, I don’t recall seeing any  the UK’s only naturalised parrot.
    MARIE-CHRISTINE O’CALLAGHAN                          was totally unexpected and made  Jimi Hendrix released a breeding  One could argue that they are
                                                         me wonder whether it was a  pair during a 1960s Carnaby Street  illegal immigrants whose presence
      sabelle Ficker sent an email to the HGSlist on Sunday 16th January  figment of my imagination. I then  stunt. Unfortunately, there is no  may adversely affect the indigenous
       suggesting that ‘If skies are clear tomorrow night, look out for the  remembered that I am, mostly, a  record of such a stunt. The truth  fauna. Or you could choose a
    I full moon.’ By some miracle, the skies were clear and we were  sensible person so I did the  is probably more prosaic; parakeets  different narrative, these elegant,
     treated to the truly spectacular sight of a perfect full moon,  sensible thing and consulted the  have been popular pets since, at  exotic newcomers have beaten the
    resplendent in the cold night air.                   internet typing ‘green birds north  least, Victorian times and some of  odds, at a time when the dominant
       This full moon, the first of the year, is called the Wolf Moon and  London’. The World Wide Web  them must have escaped or been  stories are of disappearance, loss
    each subsequent full moon has its own name. These names were first  assured me that the green bird  accidentally or intentionally  and collapse, these birds are
    used by The Old Farmer’s Almanac, an American publication started in  was real. It is a ring-necked  released and, somehow, managed  thriving and are a living source of
    1792 which contained information about all sorts of things: planting  parakeet, specifically the Indian  to thrive in London. Perhaps that  marvel, mystery and wonder;
    charts, recipes, moon and sunrise times and weather forecasts; it  subspecies which glories in the  is not as surprising as it first  besides, they truly love the
    aimed to be ‘useful and entertaining’. The Moon names that it used  name Psittacula krameri manillensis.  seems, London is the world’s first  Suburb, their favourite perch in
    (and which we still use today) came from Native Americans.  Theories as to how or when the  ‘National Park City’, it has 35,000  the garden? The apple tree.
       The January Moon was the Wolf Moon because the howling of
    wolves was often heard at this time of year. It was traditionally thought
    that wolves ‘lamented the scarcity of food in midwinter’, but we know
    today that wolves howl to define territory, locate pack members,            XUL Architecture is an  33 Belsize Lane
    reinforce social bonds and gather for hunting. Sadly there were no          imaginative architecture  London NW3 5AS  Chartered Practice
                                                                                                  +44 (0)20 7431 9014
                                                                                practice inspired by
    howling wolves in the Suburb… or were there?
                                                                                natural light
    For the Selenophiles, below is the list of full moon dates. The Strawberry and the
    Buck moons are of particular interest as they will be supermoons. They occur when
    the moon’s elliptical orbit brings it closest to Earth, making it appear 14 per cent
    larger and about 30 per cent brighter.
    Full moon dates for 2022: January 17 – Wolf Moon; February 16 – Snow Moon;
    March 18 – Worm Moon; April 16 – Pink Moon; May 16 – Flower Moon;
    June 14 – Strawberry Moon; July 13 – Buck Moon; August 11 – Sturgeon Moon;
    September 10 – Harvest Moon; October 9 – Hunter’s Moon;
    November 8 – Beaver Moon; December 7 – Cold Moon

     An amazing photograph of the Wolf Moon shot from the Suburb, with
     a little artistic licence taken by Suburb News! (Photo: Peter McCluskie)

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