A Gentle Stroll

Sunday, January 14th 2018

It has been dark and grey and black and dark grey for days, but there was something in the sky that caught my eye this afternoon - it was blue!  Blue Sky!!!!!  Unfortunately it did not last long. 

Blue Sky

There were many visitors who enjoyed walking around the reserve no matter what the weather.

The lake was quiet, with just the odd call of a Moorhen.  Whilst watching a pair of Mallard courting, a movement caught my eye.  A Goldcrest was searching for food amongst the vegetation in front of the lake hide.  I was really pleased to achieve this photograph, even with all those pesky branches in the way.

A Goldcrest

It was a bit of a shock to the system to walk out onto the moor from the relative shelter of the central part of the reserve.  Not only was the wind blowing but it was really cold.  Usually the Moles tunnel along the edges of paths, where we presume the soil is less compacted.  Looking at the square of mole hills I let my imagination wander and I fancifully thought that there could have been a house built on our moor at one time.

Mole Hills

I have mentioned that most of the Holly berries have been eaten from the trees in the centre of the reserve.  Out on the moor, in the ancient hedgeline, a Holly tree, as usual, is still covered in berries.  Are they not ripe, not sweet enough or do they just taste plain nasty?

Holly Berries still

Although the Phragmities are brown and can look dull there are times when the light catches them and they look beautiful.  I was pleased with this photogrpah showing the reeds at their best.

Reeds

Out on the woodland trail the Hart's Tongue Fern found last year is still doing well and another, smaller plant was also found a lilttle distance away.  We must have walked past it several times and not noticed it.  So much for being observant!

Hart's Tongue Fern

There is one Hazel tree near the Stone Pile that always opens its catkins early.  They were open at the beginning of the month but no female flowers could be found.  A tiny spec of red heralded the open female flower this week.

Male and female flowers on Hazel


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