Country diary: the creature I’m after lurks at the very bottom of the pond

Country diary: the creature I’m after lurks at the very bottom of the pond

Crook, County Durham: The Victorians recommended water slaters for children to keep and study, and I need photographs to send to the grandchildren

Almost 70, on my knees, and staring at life below the surface of our garden pond – it’s a childhood pleasure that you never really outgrow. Perhaps, too, a subconscious urge to eavesdrop on the lives of ancestral life forms from our evolutionary past, still thriving in an environment that we left behind aeons ago.

I wish I could be pond-watching with our grandchildren, but this year Covid precautions put paid to that. Sharing discoveries with them digitally is the only option, so now I need some photographs.

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