Site update - Autumn 2003

Summer Specials 2003

Birds first, they are such a favourite among nature-watchers. The swans have successfully bred 8 babies this year (the most ever.) The Red-crested pochard duck came and went as last year and a pair of Dabchicks and a single Water rail were also with us for a time. We have had pairs of Long-tailed tits, Reed warblers and many pairs of Wren nested on site, and the waterfowl bred very successfully. A fearless young Heron has been on site every day, and we have had regular sightings of Kingfisher (single and a pair,) Great spotted woodpecker, and Spotted flycatcher.

It has been a wonderful year for insects, and we have had a first sighting of Ringlet butterflies and the showy Beautiful demoiselle damselfly. An overnight survey gave us a huge list of moths, some really spectacular.

Fauna, too are doing well, two surveys showing that the site may well be the only place within miles on the Ver that retains Water vole, as we are active in controlling Mink. The Muntjac deer had her baby on site again this year, and our colony of Slow-worms is doing well. A bat survey, however, showed just one hunting bat and we shall continue to encourage them to the site.

Autumn Eyecatchers

Some trees have given up and died in the long dry Summer, but most plants and flowers have flourished, and for blossom look to the Sensory Garden over Autumn. The trees and shrubs are getting their Autumn colour already, with the Spindles showing magenta pink and coral. New for the site is the Celery-leaved buttercup, and a bumper crop of Teasels has attracted the first charms of Goldfinches to feed on the Seeds.

A detailed list of flora and fauna to be found or seen on site is available on the Wildlife page

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