Monday, 21 February 2011

There is a spring in my step

Yesterday was a lovely sunny day which seemed to bring everyone out to enjoy it. The bittern was seen in the usual location, to the left of Ivy North hide. On Saturday the smew was also seen once more on Ivy Lake from the North hide. The most exciting view I was informed of was a ring-billed gull on Ibsley water seen from the Tern hide.

I had a lovely view of a kingfisher while unlocking the hides in the morning. I often look out for kingfisher on the Ivy silt pond, the lake on the way between the woodland hide and Ivy south hide. Kingfisher can often be seen here first thing sitting up on the branches of the felled trees on the far side of the lake. It was sitting preening itself and then did a fantastic fly by over onto Ivy Lake.

From Ivy south hide another bird could be seen preening itself and drying out in the morning sun, but this one looked a lot more bizarre. It was a cormorant perched right at the very top of a tall silver birch tree!

When I went round to lock up the woodland hide I was most surprised to see three of the roe deer right in front of the hide. They were feeding on the bramble at the top of the bank by the feeders.

This morning I have been on a mission to take some photos with our brand new shiny camera, a W80 Pentax which has very generously been donated to the reserve by Castle Cameras (they have shops in both Bournemouth and Salisbury).

Firstly the snowdrops on the edge of the car park which were looking fantastic in the sunshine yesterday.

Spring is definitely in the air as the first of our wild daffodils is blooming on the approach to the woodland hide.

Everywhere you look in the woodland there are the new shoots of stinging nettles poking through and Arum, also known as lords and ladies or cuckoo pint, recognisable by its arrowhead shaped leaves.

Also on the approach to the woodland hide, if you look carefully amongst the leaf litter you will find it to be packed with scarlet elf cup.

And my last attempt of a macro shot is of the hazel flowers. The catkins are the male flower and if you look even closer you will see the tiny red star flowers which are the female flowers growing out of a bud like structure.

Many thanks to Castle Cameras for our new camera, it will certainly brighten up my blog entries in the future!

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