Well as usual with this time of year there are plenty of exciting things going on, just not enough time to get the news up on these pages.
On Monday I joined our Ecology team to carry out a series of Odonata (Dragonfly and Damselfly) larval survey at Swanwick Lakes. This was to investigate the effects the fish in centre lake are having on the dragonfly and damselfly populations. After a bit of searching we mainly found Blue-tailed, Common blue and Red-eyed damselfly larvae with one Common hawker dragonfly larva.
Over the past few days I’ve mostly spent my time down at Farlington. On Tuesday the Farlington volunteer team and I cut back the footpath around peters pond with some cattle moves on the side. In checking the fences before the move I came across a patch of Adders tongue fern north of the A27.
Yesterday the Beechcroft team and I cut back the short bramble regrowth in the point field with the aim of getting more grass back within the scrub blocks rather than the bramble just taking hold again. This will also encourage the cattle to move around this area more.
Farlington Bird highlight of the week has to be between the Terns putting on a great show just metres from the sea wall, and the trio of Spoonbill.
At high tide on Wednesday I was treated to great views of all three of the harbours resident Terns. Firstly there was a pair of Sandwich terns fishing in the corner next to the car park/reserve entrance they were later joined by two Little tern who were following the whole seawall. I walked down to the lake view point wondering if the Curlew sandpiper was still around. Unfortunately it wasn’t but I was treated to a fishing Little tern right next to the view point, unbothered by my presence. Walking back to the hut a number of Common terns were flying by a little further off in the harbour occasionally coming closer. Seems now is the time to see the Terns, particularly on high tide as they fish very close to the seawall.
Yesterday around 0930 there were three Spoonbill on the deeps, more than I’ve ever seen on the reserve. They were roosting up with a Grey heron and a Little egret – perhaps it was some sort of Heron family meeting? They proceeded to start feeding and came incredibly close to the seawall. We went about our work in the point field, but even when we came back there were still two present at 1430. At least one seemed to be present on the reserve for much of the week.
Maybe next week we can hope the Greater yellowlegs fancy a change from Titchfield and head along the coast to Farlington.