Wandering Around

Sunday, April 17th 2016

A Grey Heron taking off from the Scrapes against a blue sky was a good start to the morning.

Grey Heron

Unfortunately eyes could not remain on the bird as underfoot it was frosty.

Frosty underfoot

As the sun rose it began to melt the frost but only where it could reach.

Sun, shadows and frost

The back garden nets were raised and the bird ringers continued to catch more Lesser Redpolls, 38 new ones, bringing the total this year to 235.  Two more controls were also caught.  It was noticeable when the data was entered into IPMR that many of the birds handled today were females.  

The bird ringers really appreciate the support of other volunteers who keep the net rides in pristine condition, make tea, wash up, check bird bags and bring stickies and sausage rolls.  A huge thank you to them all.

We caught an eight year old Lesser Redpoll and thought it was the oldest on record, unfortunately it is not and we need to catch it next year. 

Lesser Redpoll

Whilst talking of birds if you are in the Field Centre keep your eye on the nest box camera as the Blue Tit is making her nest. The box did have some nesting material and sawdust in it, which was not to her taste and she removed it all, before starting to bring in her own much better material.

Sometimes, not often, it is mentioned on the blog that we get a little impatient at this time of year as we await the spring flowers.  Nearly but not quite are some Bluebell buds growing along the quad bike track.  A little more patience.

Bluebell bud

When reading the information about the food plants of some moth caterpillars, Downy Birch is often mentioned.  Silver Birch is well known on the reserve but we were unsure of Downy Birch, until we found one and it is downy!  When the stems and leaves are touched they really do feel soft and downy.  You can see the hairs covering this stem.

Downy Birch stem

Scarlet age 20 months, came in with Mum and Dad to pick up her winning prize from the Easter Hunt.  Thank you to everyone who supported this.

Winning prize

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