The Little Ringed Plover nests which had hatched last month all resulted in failure, with the chicks being lost to predators, although I don't know what. However two pairs are now sitting on eggs once again, at least one pair on a clutch of four eggs, impressive, as although four is typical for first clutches later ones tend to be fewer.
Thursday today, so the volunteers were in, the task was not one of our favourites, Ragwort control, but we are getting on top of it and the sward is improving for both grazing waterfowl and nesting Lapwing.
Michelle had returned to the Centre with a fairly large, bright red, beetle, like a giant, unspotted Ladybird. We looked it up and it proved to be a Red Poplar Leaf Beetle. Apparently the adults are distasteful because, when they are larvae, they sequester salicylic acid from the leaves of the willows and poplars they feed on. This compound is the original "Aspirin" so perhaps they would also be a cure for headache. I did not get a picture because it flew away.