Category Archives: Flora

Geese and bull

A flock of 30 to 40 geese enjoying the stubble in Flora Field this morning. They were either greylags of pink footed or both, sorry, can’t tell the difference form the distance I observed them.

The new bull has arrived, a fine chunky fellow. Some of the cows were showing a distinct interest this morning so no worries about further calves on the evidence so far.

Highlights of the week

Lots of butterflies out in the sun. On Tuesday we saw a gatekeeper at ‘Thistle Corner’ on the Pony Wood path, commas, a peacock, and lots of whites as we progressed round the wood; speckled woods in the Orchard; small skippers in West Field and the Hay Meadow, plus meadow browns of course. We also saw a smallish dragonfly in the woodland extension, too distant to identify, and the marmalade hoverfly photographed below. A jay was squeaking like a monkey in the wood.

Today more gatekeepers at Thistle Corner, plus the one photographed below in the hedge between Big Meadow and School Pond. A greenfinch was calling noisily near the gates between Big Meadow and Grammar School Field.

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Stonechat

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While walking around the Reserve today we spotted this stonechat in Flora Field. West Field scrape was extensively flooded with the rain we have had and there were many Black-headed, Herring and Lesser Black-backed gulls present. Further round there were a couple of mistle thrush in Big Meadow.

Nomada Flava

Phil Hendry took this lovely photo of a cuckoo bee on the margin of the Long Pads – one of very many. There were lots of mining bees too. This is what he wrote:

Following your questions about whether it is a ‘good’ bee… It doesn’t collect pollen; it visits a wide variety of flowers. It’s ‘naughty’ in that it is a ‘cleptoparasite’ – laying its eggs in the nests of several species of solitary ‘Andrena’ mining bees – along that path, they’re mostly Andrena fulva, the Tawny mining bee, though there are a few Ashy mining bees (Andrena Cineraria) nesting there too.

 

NomadaFlava

Wheatear in Flora Field

We saw one possibly two wheatear today – they usually drop by after the field has been ploughed , en route to the Greenland probably. Also a mistle thrush. Over our garden , so should be over the reserve too, our first sighting of swifts.

We haven’t seen roe deer in the reserve recently but one was outside my kitchen window yesterday early morning, on it’s way to nibble the leaves off the roses.