What a Day!

Sunday, March 13th 2016

The bird ringers were ringing at another site this morning.  Jenny took time out to watch the Great Crested Grebes displaying.

Jenny bird watching

During the session, birds processed included Marsh Tit, Reed Bunting and this beautiful Song Thrush.

Song Thrush

Back at Foxglove, a walk was carried out to check that all the trees, trunks and ponds were still there for the Easter trail.  (Some were not so it is back to the drawing board!)  The lake hide is part of the walk so an excuse to see what was around.  Mallard, Moorhen and Greylag Geese all present and correct.  A photograph of the geese was needed.  Zoom and click and a quick look, there was something hiding behind them in the reeds.

Greylag Geese with something hiding behind them

Patience and it showed itself.  It was the Little Grebe or Dabchick as it is sometimes known.  These birds usually do not arrive on the lake until mid to late summer.  Only one was spotted so we wait to see if a second appears.

Little Grebe

Heading back to the Field Centre, the Common Frogs were croaking in the ponds, but were very wary of footsteps and disappeared  quickly.  Waiting quietly one showed its head.  No apologies for saying this one looked very happy with a smile on its face.

Common Frog

The first Common Toad heading back to the ponds was also seen but it too was shy and hid in the undergrowth.

Hiding Common toad

There were insects flying and in the ponds 3 Spined Sticklebacks, tiny beetles, immature Pond Skaters and this water boatman, probably Notonecta glauca, were recorded.

Water Boatman

Late in the afternoon, taking time out to watch Lesser Redpoll, Siskin and Goldfinch through the kitchen window, they suddenly all flew off.  Nothing to be seen to frighten them but when the back garden was checked the reason for their flight was obvious! A male Sparrowhawk, who was looking somewhat disgruntled that there were no birds around anymore.


Driving out of the reserve three white marks were seen on the heath.  First thought was that it was litter, but they moved.  Three Roe Deer, one buck in velvet and two does.  One of the does had a white mark on her neck.

Roe Deer doe

You can just see the ears of the third deer underneath the buck's nose

Roe Deer

The mist lifted during the morning and the temperature rose.  Many visitors came to the reserve and walked around, thoroughly enjoying the sun, warmth and the peace and quiet.

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