Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Baby boom

A visit to Summer Leys this morning was rewarding on a number of fronts. There are large numbers of young birds all over the reserve now. The Black-headed Gulls have had a good breeding year, dozens of youngsters are taking their first flights. 
A few Common Tern chicks have just hatched on Mary's Island. The bulk of the terns have nested on Round and Eddie's Islands this year and most were washed out when the reserve flooded a few weeks ago. Fortunately many have settled back for a second attempt that will hopefully be more successful than the first.
Multiple broods of Lapwings have been seen on and around the scrape and the first of two broods of Little-ringed Plovers hatched on Sunday.
A good proportion of the holes in the recently refurbished Sand Martin colony have been occupied with constant activity from the adult birds.
Butterflies were plentiful today with good numbers on the wing, Ringlets and Marbled Whites being the predominant species. The area at the back of Mary's Lake was particularly good for the latter of the two species with ~30  individuals in an area the size of a tennis court.
On a slightly more worrying note a family of Mink has taken up residence amongst the rocks of the main lake overflow with at least two adults and a kit having been seen.
                                Demanding Jackdaw
                                                Marbled White
                                                Mink

    Regards,
                                  Neil H.
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