That is to say there hasn’t been anything out of the ordinary today, but it was another one of those days, typical of many at Blashford, where there has generally been an extraordinary amount of wildlife to see and enjoy:
Opening up Tern Hide this morning several lapwing were displaying overhead and then walking around the back of the centre to unlock the shutters I disturbed two roe deer who had clearly spent the night on the little track down to the river just there. I say disturbed, but that’s a bit of a strong term, rather they got up from their “beds”, looked at me, shook the dew of their backs and then ambled slowly off up the bank and along the river, browsing as they went.
I heard my first cuckoo calling from the north shore of Ivy Lake to the east of Ivy North Hide and enjoyed nice close up views of a treecreeper at the back of the badger sett. The remaining feeders at the Woodland Hide were sporting a mix of tits and finches as well as a great spotted woodpecker. Great crested grebe, coot and gadwall, along with the regular pike, were all amongst the fallen trees immediately below the Ivy South Hide.
A bit later in the morning a pre-lunch check of the site was rewarded by a very handsome grey wagtail and a pair of redshank working the shore outside Tern Hide. Along the woodland edges throughout the reserve blackcaps are all very obvious, both visibly and by their song, and each short spell of sunshine saw orangetip butterflies fluttering up amongst the hedge-garlic and other woodland flowers. There was a common sandpiper south of Lapwing Hide, at least half-a-dozen common terns over Ibsley Water and, of course at this time of year, that Blashford speciality of sand martin reeling in and out of the nest bank at Goosander Hide:
On the slightly more extraordinary front, I’m unaware of their having been seen today, but yesterday there was a pair of pintail on Rockford Lake, not a duck we would normally expect to see at this time of year.