A mellow yellow day

Such joy to be opening the reserve on another glorious sunny day.   With the approach of St David’s day next week it was delightful to find the display of native daffodils near the Woodland hide  starting to come into their full splendour.

native daffodils near Woodland Hide

and signs of spring elsewhere on the reserve in the appearance of catkins

catkins

On opening up the Woodland hide it was obvious that the platform outside the hide, above the disabled access window, was being used by some large birds, probably crows – as a place to stand and rub themselves against the window –

woodland hide - dirty window, before

So some more work for our busy reserve wardens to make sure visitors could see out properly

and after

Among the birds seen and reported by others were a single brambling near the woodland hide with the usual collection of siskin, lesser redpoll and other finches.  Nuthatches , greater spotted woodpeckers, song and mistle thrush could all be heard and,with a little patience, seen nearby. On the water we still have a good selection of ducks including red-headed smew seen several times on Ivy Lake.   Until recently mostly only using the reserve for overnight roosting  the now increasingly large collections of goosander on Ibsley water are now beginning to engage in courtship displays.

goosander

Among the wader species the ‘usual’ compliment of redshank, oystercatcher and lapwing were joined by at least four ruff, some black-tailed godwit and a snipe.

Birds, or at least one bird, have also made an appearance in our moth trap.     As well as five species found intact ( common quaker, small quaker, clouded drab, chestnut and dark chestnut) there was evidence of a pale brindled beauty, in the form of three wings ( I’ve heard of forewings, but not three!!) evidently where a bird has got into the moth trap for some easy pickings. Here’s some of the evidence ‘ reconstructed’

pale brindled beauty wings - 'post mortem'

Behind the Centre on top of one of the posts on the fence surrounding the pond , the fruiting bodies of a lichen(?) made a delightful, if somewhat alien like,  display

lichen (?)

and nearby the pulmonaria, or lungwort,  flowers added an amazing splash of colour.  The name refers, I believe , to the supposed similarity of the leaf pattern which looks like lung tissue and hence in homeopathic terms indicated that it was some sort of curative for diseases of the lung.

lungwort

Probably the same reasoning applies to this common toad (in the hole?) seen crossing the path to Ivy South Hide, which presumably is a cure for warts!!

common toad

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