2 June 2001

Lots to report. Muntjac female with her new tiny fawn at heel seen this week, & again crossing the main boardwalk despite all the activity on Sunday. She seems to be favouring the Butterfly Meadow for lying-up at present. Two well-grown slow-worms found when dismantling snake-heaps, plus a nest of young mice, beautifully ensconced in the softest of nests made from moss and pink carpet threads. The poor Pochard duck is still being harassed by the cob ('Oscar') who seems to have developed an intense dislike of her. He and the pen ('Camilla') still have their 7 cygnets, all growing well, as are the coot, moorhen and mallard families, 3 and 1, 1 and 11 respectively. Wildflowers all as last week, splendid colour - the grasses have suddenly shot up in a week. Bee Orchids still surviving - one nibbled, two trying to send up a flower spike.

9 June 2001

Saw 2 slow worms writhed together in garden, probably male and female. One more slow worm found in snake-heap no. 2. Heron around site all day down by Russo allotment. The swan family still around. Duck family down to 8 ducklings; new family with 2. Bee Orchids just starting to push up a flower spike each, will be a race between flowering and being eaten by slugs, one gone already. New seedling from this year's planting has come up - probably a Valerian or a Burnet but too entangled to tell without squashing surrounding flowers, flower head too immature as yet. Lots of water soldiers, Ramshorn snails and a dragonfly and a damselfly larva donated and put in water at various points on the site.

16 June 2001

***** slugs have eaten all the Bee orchids. New plant on site, Valerian, result of this year's planting. Sticklebacks in the Mere. Yellow Waterlily plantings flourishing. Some water Soldiers surviving. Nest of three-quarter grown shrews found when clearing snake-heaps, plus huge fat hedgehog snoring the day away in its nest - all rehomed. Flowers going over now - however, Elder trees in full bloom, as are Orange daisies and Ragged Robin. Rocket still out, but Red campion just about over.

23 June 2001

More new bird young - family of blue tits has fledged and at least a few have survived and are patronising the bird feeder on Butterfly Meadow despite efforts by jays and magpies to get them from their nest. 2 brand new coot young and a small family of ducklings with one yellow one out on mere. 2 x Water Soldiers still surviving - so far so good. 2 x butterflies seen, a White and a Speckled Wood; three cheers, haven't seen any for weeks. One beautiful Demoiselle damselfly seen also. Just coming into bloom - purple loosestrife, field cranesbill, greater convolvulus,; still well out, orange daisy, bloody cranesbill. Everything has shot up to about 6 feet tall, it seems.

Next report (July 2001)