Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Colonial life

Monday was quiet with the wet weather, but the male red-crested pochard was present, and was again on South Marsh East today pictured above shouting at a mallard, although not the flashiest individual we have seen. Nearby were the two little ringed plover pictured, cuckoo calling, and plenty of black-headed gull chicks, but nice to see was the very first tern chick, fish are being returned regularly to other expectant incubators as pictured (pretty sure it is a perch) and another pair of terns seemed to be displaying to each other above. The two oystercatcher chicks on South Marsh East are well developed now, whereas the South Marsh West pair have only just hatched. Keeping out the sun on the hide was this nice brimstone moth, and basking in it was another grass snake at East Pond and this hybrid marsh orchid – most of our orchids are a mix of marsh and common spotted – usually resulting in ‘hybrid vigour’ giving much enlarged flowering stems as with this individual. A stoat was seen carrying a baby rat off across the car park to which it is most welcome, and the kestrel above was also seen eating what appears to be an unfortunate long-tailed tit, whilst a common buzzard was on the look out over north lagoon. Finally the mistle thrushes photographed in the last posting have presumably fledged – no sign of them about today so given their size on Monday it is presumed they have left rather than been predated.