A damp morning perambulation…

After the heavy wind and rain last night I decided to patrol the paths on the reserve and check for any fallen trees and branches that may have come down during the night. Surprisingly very little damage had been done. On the path past the woodland hide I turned over a piece of corrugated metal sheet to reveal a fantastic grass snake, judging by the size and head shape this individual is probably a female.

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Continuing along dockens water I heard several singing warblers including blackcap, garden warbler, willow warbler and chiffchaff. I also noticed a lot of himalayan balsam seedlings coming up amongst the ferns and nettles, we will have to return in a few weeks with the Blashford volunteers and pull up this invasive pest before it can seed and spread anymore.

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Just south of the balsam seedlings is one of Blashfords hidden mirco worlds, a tiny area of bog habitat, just north of Ivy silt pond, complete with spagnum mosses, bog myrtle and has even contained lesser marsh grasshopper in the past. I stopped for a while to record any birds present as part of the reserve breeding birds survey, 2 reed warblers, sedge warbler and reed bunting were all singing in the reeds around the edge of the pond. All in all a very enjoyable morning considering the wet start to the day.

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