Thursday, 14 April 2011

South or South-east Force 3 to 4, Visibility Moderate

A few new migrants seem to arrived overnight, there were several reed warbler around the reserve and I also saw and heard my first garden warbler. The moth trap also contained a migrant, a dark sword-grass, a species that usual starts turning up after mid-summer. It is not the most spectacular to look at but the distances it covers are impressive. There was also the first scarce prominent of the year, these are very fine moths, but the scales are lost from the wings very easily, you can see a few bare patches on the wings of this one.
Also in the trap was a single harlequin ladybird, an alien species now firmly here to stay.
The blossom season moves on, the cherry plum flowered first and is now well over, the blackthorn followed and is also now largely over as is our single pear tree. However the scatter of apple trees are all now in full flower.
Under the trees the wild daffodil are all finished and the bluebell still a little way off but the wild arum are at their peak and some of them are looking especially magnificent, the conditions this year must be ideal.
Of course today was Thursday and so the volunteers were in and today's task was to put out the tern rafts, complete with the new pumice and shell covering. The light winds were good for towing them out, but despite this it is always a bit tricky getting them to go in a straight line. Still all four were put out, all we need now is for some of the five common tern out on Ibsley Water today to come south and find them. No pictures as I was in the boat all morning and I took my camera, rather than the new water-proof one, which would have been a better idea.

I had intended to look for the false morel fungus last week, but forgot, prompted by a call to ask if they were up yet, I looked this afternoon and the answer was that there are several, although most already a little past their best. The picture shows the best of the them.
Apart from the reed and garden warbler, the day was notable for the mix of winter and summer birds. On Ibsley Water 3 goldeneye, 4 goosander and a few wigeon tell of winter but sand and house martin and swallow speak of summer. A dunlin and a common sandpiper were just moving through, but I think the 5 common tern are here to stay as they have been there a few days now. The only other notable bird was a second summer yellow-legged gull.

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