Locking up photos

When I locked Ivy North Hide today I was pleased to see Walter White the great white egret fishing in the bay. He has been not been seen since 28th of July so it was good to see him back, looking in the hide log book he had been seen on and off throughout the day.

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Great white egret, Ivy North hide

I also saw this female roe deer with two kids to the left of the hide.

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Roe deer

Kingfishers numbers are currently topped up by young birds leaving their nests, and they’re being seen from at Goosander hide and both the Ivy lake hides regularly at the moment. I saw two at Ivy North hide at 5pm but an impressive four were reported earlier in the day. I also saw two green sandpipers, but unfortunately not close enough to photograph.


Spot the kingfisher


Kingfisher on it’s perch

9 thoughts on “Locking up photos

    • Thanks Tim. The native roe deer are always great to see and watch. Unfortunately the large herds of fallow here are a problem overgrazing the woodland understory, nibbling coppice stools to the point of no return and carrying large numbers of ticks. Given the UK’s large deer population (two native species and four feral non-natives), it is important the Isle of Wight remains deer free given your fantastically dense and diverse shrub layer and plant communities. The presence of deer in numbers on the island would certainly have a negative effect on insect, woodland bird and dormouse populations.

      • ejbhwt

        I’m afraid that you’ve got it completely wrong about the deer on the Isle of Wight.

        The island has not been deer free for many years and these creatures are just as much at home here as anywhere else. In fact both archaelogical and historic records demonstrate that native deer co-existed here for thousands of years without the destructive effects that you claim.

        You corrrectly point out problems caused by ill-managed over populations of non-native deer but scientific research shows that having too few deer is equally damaging with a loss of biodiversity. This is manifesting itself on the island with scarce or absent species such as the Greater Horseshoe Bat and Tawny Owl to name but a few.

        It would be very refreshing if an organisation that claims to be protecting local wildlife could take a more balanced view on all our native flora and fauna.

      • Yes they co-existed for thousands of years with predators. Unless you’re seriously considering putting lynx or wolves on the island (good luck with trying to get that through!) then there is not much hope of managing deer properly there. Islands always lack certain species, that’s just island biogeography and that makes islands all the more interesting, special and unique for it. We do have a balanced view of protecting wildlife, and introducing deer (particularly non-natives) to an island where there were previously none, particularly when sensitive species like nightingales and dormice are present, just isn’t nature conservation. Roe and red deer have massive distributions far greater than nightingales and dormice in Europe and Asia, putting them on a tiny wooded island won’t help anything or anyone. It’ll also spread ticks and lyme’s disease and cause traffic accidents. I assume you are interested in deer from a management and stalking point of view? If you’re so keen to do this why not relocate to somewhere with deer already?

  1. The archaeological records to which I refer includes Red Squirrels, Dormice and native deer species, there is nothing recorded for Bears, Wolves or Lynx. Mankind appears to have been the apex predator on the island at that time.

    History suggests that deer were present on the island from the end of the last Ice Age until the 19th century. During this time the other species that you mention were also present here.

    Dormice are present in other southern counties such as Dorset which also claims greater floral diversity than the island whilst Hampshire also claims to have the greatest biological diversity of all English counties, both of these areas have strong wild deer populations.

    In historic times deer numbers were controlled on the island and when their hunting became unfashionable they were soon exterminated, only to re-emerge again in the 20th century.

    If you wish to broaden you knowledge of wild deer on the isle of wight please see Isle of Wight Deer http://wp.me/p4B2Cn-4 and Isle of Wight Deer Conservation http://wp.me/p5Lzto-2.

    There is a deer survey page should you choose to participate

    • There was a lot more woodland/habitat back then too. The smaller areas left now would be degraded quickly by deer. Of all the problems currently faced by wildlife and nature conservation putting deer back on the Isle of Wight is of such a low priority. And thanks but I’m not interested in reading your blogs. It’s a massive shame irresponsible individuals have released/allowed to escape red deer and muntjac on the island. I don’t doubt someone will release grey squirrels and mink next.

  2. Yes roe have been seen doing this. But I don’t believe red deer and muntjac made it under their own steam, someone released them.

    • I have some info on the Reds that might be of interest.

      As you probably know during the 1980’s and 90’s there were at least 3 deer farms on the island that kept them, it is probable that some deer escaped from all of these establishments however the last of these farms, at Chale closed around 2000 although there is now a much smaller herd of emparked Reds there now.

      There have also been various tourist attractions & privately owned Reds over this period. Unsurprisingly some of these escaped deer have now bred in the wild, possibly for several generations.

      Oglander recounts a tale of a mature Red stag that swam across from the New Forest whilst being hunted in the 17th century, this deer resided on his estate but always disappeared during the rut, Oglander believed that it returned to the New Forest during this period.

      It would be entirely within the capability and habits of modern day Red stags to travel to the island, particularly during the rut and it is most likely the wild Red deer currently found on the island are of a very mixed origin.

      The Muntjac are more problematic.

      There may have been some at Robin Hill but there animal collection was dispersed in the 20th century, it is now 2015 which puts us some way beyond the expected lifespan of most wild Muntjac. It may be that these are the deer that are now most numerous on the island.

      Last year a Muntjac was spotted swimming around Portsmouth Harbour so it is possible that they are swimming across, I have yet to hear of any deliberate releases of them.

      Richard Grogan describes a distinctive pale or white Fallow buck that he saw in Parkhurst around 10 years ago that he believed came from the mainland and it would appear that when Fallow are seen here it is usually the bucks that are seen.

      Wild deer and their impacts on the island have been poorly recorded in the past, Isle of Wight Deer Conservation are seeking to fill this knowledge gap and are conducting a survey of the island’s wild deer.

      Please feel free to participate in their survey if you so wish

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