Sunday, 17 May 2015

Busy Spring wildlife and busy volunteers!

With May half term around the corner the reserve is a joy to visit with a feel of summer in the air! Gorse and broom bushes are in full flower adding splashes of colour along the green and blue trail. The final oak trees have joined the other tree species in unfurling their leaves, and caterpillars are beginning to appear hanging down from their canopies, often feeding the nesting birds who are busy all round the reserve.
Broom in flower 17/05/2015

The woodlands in full sunshine

 For spring and summer our volunteer work party jobs turn to site maintenance and surveying the wildlife; our latest tasks have included finishing off the bird viewing screen in the wild play space in the main car park. The screen looks out at the bird feeder and bug hotels, and the hazel was supplied by our very Bradfield woods.
Young Wardens helping over Easter to finish the bug hotels

Volunteers building the bird viewing screen
The finished screen with viewing windows and seats 

Other recent volunteer tasks have involved setting up the reptile transect for the year ahead by laying out refuges that warm up in the sun around the reserve. Reptiles, particularly grass snakes, slow worms and common lizards use these to warm up in the cooler mornings and evenings over spring, summer and autumn. We have started the regular tasks of checking these sheets and so far have found several grass snakes and common lizards.
Volunteers checking the reptile refuges and recording the slow worms found here

Adult grass snake using the refuge for warmth

Slow worms

What will be next?!!!!

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