With heavy downpours this past week most of the pools and some paths had become flooded, however for many intrepid visitors who braved the weather there was still plenty to see. A new spoonbill has joined the group, bringing the group up to four individuals this week. The spoonbills are still hanging around the pools at mash covert hide and the bridge screen. Over in marsh covert woods the cattle egrets have been spotted in the tree tops along with little egrets on nests with chicks. The bearded tits have also fledged a second nest and the juveniles have been spotted during still weather.
With water levels being higher than usual waders have been less active, but black-tailed godwits, avocets, lapwing and redshank are still around. On the bridge pool greenshank and little-ringed plover have been spotted as well as a pair of breeding great crested grebes, and on Saturday a female marsh harrier was seen flying over the reedbed. Warblers are still in full force with reed, Cetti’s and sedge warblers still singing away. Grasshopper warblers have also started singing again, they’re mainly heard around the crop fields and Burton point.
Grasshopper warbler singing (Ray Banks)
Luckily by the time Friday came around the weather had brightened up which had brought out a ton of insects. By the path edges there has been a plethora of butterflies including, speckled wood, large white, green veined white, large skipper, small copper and painted lady. By the ponds on the bored walk there has also been blue tailed, azure, red-eyed damselflies.
To stay with the insect theme, this week’s star sighting goes to the scarlet tiger moth that was spotted at the end of the board walk by the small ponds.
Scarlet tiger moth (Neil Francis)
Due to the bad weather and general busyness of the wardens some of the path edges and pathways had become over grown, so this week was dedicated to cutting back nettles and brambles along the paths and removing low hanging branches to make the reserve more accessible to the public. With special thanks to the volunteers that came in to help with the clean-up. Last week the assistant wardens Liz and Dan, with a group of volunteers, set up two areas of electric fencing at the point of ayr to provide a safe area for little terns to nest and as of this week we have had our first report of terns nesting, with hopefully more to come.
We have a busy few weeks, with our first Optics Demo in several years on Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 June, giving you chance to try a broad range of binoculars and 'scopes with expert advice available to help make the big decisions. We also have our new wildflower-themed Wild Challenge family trail out for June, so don't forget to pick up a quiz sheet on arrival at the visitor centre.
Join our friendly, knowledgeable volunteer, Richard for Summer Wildlife Wander around much of Burton Mere Wetlands, including the unmissable viewpoint at the end of the Hillfort Trail on Burton Point.
On Friday 2 and Saturday 3 August. Family visitors can start booking on our Big Wild Sleepout. For more information click here.
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