Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Around the Garden Flora

Some of the blooms from the past month or so.

Around the Garden Fauna

I thought I'd do a garden update as I haven't for a while. As well as the regular birds we now have a regular Squirrel and a Hedgehog. We've seen the Hedgehog a few times and he often leaves us presents on the lawn so we know he's around!

Magpie Moth
Speckled Wood
Juvenile Robin

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Golden Acre Park & Adel Dam (Pt 2)

At the top of the lake there is access to Adel Dam, though many people seem to overlook it (which is not such a bad thing as it's nice to have the place almost to yourself!). We could hear a Woodpecker almost straight away but it eluded us for now. At the first hide we sat quite a while watching a large group of Great Tit's on the feeders. A young Moorhen swam across the pond and there were butterflies all over. It all looked quite beautiful in the sun.

Taking a walk through the woods we spotted Large Whites, Commas, Orange Tips and then a Red Admiral basking in the sun on the hide wall.

In the hide a very helpful chap pointed out a female Shelduck, a Red Kite and what I had taken for a Mallard (I didn't have my binoculars - I know how could I forget them!!) was actually a female Mandarin with two chicks. I quick photo and a zoom in and I could see the stripe by the eye and the different markings. That makes bird number 99 for me as i've only ever seen a Mandarin in bird gardens before, the chicks were very similar to Mallard chicks.

As walked around the woods we spotted a Nuthatch in the trees. Back near the entrance by the beck we had a sudden sighting of the elusive Woodpecker that we had kept hearing all the way round. It was pretty well hidden though you can just about see it in this shot.

In this little patch we were surround by birds - Song Thrush, Blackbirds, a Wren, Woodpigeon, Great and Blue Tits. Then I spotted something moving up the tree trunk - Treecreepers - 3 of them! It's only the second time I have ever seen them and the best views too. I was really happy with spotting those and we watched for a while before they were disturbed by a family walking by.
A beautiful morning for a walk and we all really enjoyed. The little one was really excited to see a Woodpecker and it was nice for the most part to have the place to ourselves.

Golden Acre Park & Adel Dam (Pt 1)

We had a couple of hours to spare yesterday morning and spent it exploring Golden Acre & Adel Dam (I didn't realise just how close the Dam is to the park!). As soon as we went near the water we were mobbed from all sides by the birds looking for handouts, we did stop and oblige to keep the little one happy (and the ducks too!).

There were several Coot and Moorhen youngsters amongst the throng and some Mallard chicks which stuck to the water. A couple of Canada and Greylag Geese rounded off the water birds here.
A full circle of the lake revealed rabbits, a Blackbird sunning itself and several more foraging in the undergrowth. Some very friendly Squirrels, Great Tits and Chaffinch that were used to being fed nuts by a guy. Thrilled the little one no end when one took a nut from her hand (and made up for the us having her sit still in the hides round the dam!).

The gardens are kept beautifully here and there were butterflies everywhere - Small Tortoisehell, Red Admiral, Large White, Orange Tip and Commas. We didn't have time to go onto Breary Marsh and Paul's Pond but it did look very green and thick with vegetation.

Adel Dam to follow.

Saturday, 3 July 2010


We have had up to eight Swifts in 'residence' above our house since May. They are lovely to watch and i've spent a fair few evenings sat in the garden watching them screech about in the sky long after all the other birds have disappeared for the day.

They are difficult to photograph though I have tried and the best shot i'd come up with is this one, with the sun just catching the wing as it turned.

This morning though I watched all 8 birds behaving liked i'd never seen before. There were all flying at roof height and below, which made for great views from the bedroom window. They were flying pretty close to the buildings too. Three of them kept landing on the old factory opposite and seemingly trying to get into the cracks. I have never seen a Swift land before and it was quite something to watch!

Amazing what you can see from your own window!