Snow Deer

Jack Frost

Jack Frost

As I cycled round unlocking this morning I thought I saw a goat looking back at me from across the pond by Ivy North Hide. In fact it was the white fallow deer that I had seen on a previous evening. It had tucked itself away amongst the undergrowth but unfortunately it still stood out like a sore thumb! There was also a darker deer with it that I could only just make out; it was just like its shadow.

White Fallow Deer

White Fallow Deer

It wasn’t long before it decided I was too scary and it shot off towards the woodland hide; its shadow close behind. It stood up on top of the ridge for a while but my shaky hands failed to get a good shot.

Spot the deer!

Spot the deer!

Back at the Centre the pond was partially frozen. The ice didn’t completely cover the pond and there were long pointy ice crystals around the edge.

Frozen Pond

Frozen Pond

Ice shards

Ice shards

I noticed a diving beetle swimming beneath the ice and wondered what they do when the pond completely freezes over; they have to come up to the surface and take a bubble of air down with them in order to breathe, just like a scuba diver. As I watched the beetle found a bubble of air trapped under the ice and reversed into it to collect a bubble on its bottom!

Bubbles!

Bubbles!

The bittern was seen directly down in front of Ivy North Hide this afternoon as it raised its head to swallow a fish. It then quickly disappeared back into the reeds.

Siskin and brambling numbers are continuing to increase; there were at least 20 brambling seen from Woodland Hide today. Wigeon numbers are up on Ivy Lake however they are likely to be ones displaced from the valley as those numbers are down.

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