On 1st February the Penduline Tit returned to Radipole Lake and has been seen frequently on the reserve these past two weeks. It's current favourite place to be is in the reed beds near the viewing shelter. On 5th February two more Penduline Tits were seen over at Lodmoor. Both of these birds were seen in the reed beds calling to each other but moving around a lot. All three birds are male, no sign of any females yet but we will keep you posted.
Photo Credits: Left - Radipole Lake Penduline Tit, Right - Lodmoor Penduline Tit
Both photos by Edmund Mackrill @weymouthbirder
Water levels are higher than usual after Storm Ciara last week. There are Tufted Ducks, Shelduck, Shoveler, Mallard, Teal and Gadwall around the reserves. Occasional sightings of Great White Egrets, Cattle Egrets, Spoonbills, Lapwings, Scaup and Pochard over at Lodmoor. Interestingly, one of the Spoonbills had coloured rings originating from Northern France. Marsh Harriers have been seen on both reserves. A few days ago a Sandwich Tern and a Yellow legged Gull were seen in the Discovery Centre car park. Storm Dennis is due to arrive over this weekend however.
Despite the higher water levels, wildflowers are blooming earlier than usual this year. Blackthorn is starting to be covered in blossom. There are two Hawthorn on Radipole covered in leaves and with flowers in bud. A few days of warm sunshine will bring them into flower. These small trees normally flower in May! There's a sprinkling of golden stars i.e. Lesser Celandine along the bank of the river going up to the Viewing Shelter.
Large purple patches of Sweet Violets are appearing on the Buddleia Loop and also Primroses.
Up at the North Screen, work has begun as part of the Fen Creation Project. The ditches are being dug out and rejuvenated to make it more attractive to bringing in wading birds. It is the first time the ditches have been improved since they were put in place a decade ago. This phase should be completed by the end of February.
For all the latest sightings contact Radipole Lake Discovery Centre, details below or pop in and see us. Hot and cold refreshments and snacks available.
Telephone: 01305 778313
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