Event report – visit to Ham Wall, May 2018
On Sunday 20 May, 8 Members met up at Ham Wall RSPB reserve on the Somerset Levels for a glorious afternoon. Bitterns were booming in the reeds, and we also heard cuckoos and warblers, including Cettis. Among the birds we were lucky enough to see were Hobby, Marsh Harrier, Great Egret, Grebe, and Lapwing. Among the damselflies was the Red-Eyed Damselfly. We saw a few butterflies, including Holly Blue, Orange Tip, Brimstone and Red Admiral.
The highlight of the day however, was the sight of 2 Tawny Owl chicks high up on a branch, not far from the Avalon Hide. What a lovely surprise it was to see them!
Event report – visit to Long Wood, Cheddar, April 2018
On Sunday 22 April, 9 of us gathered at 10am on a beautiful morning for a walk at Long Wood, Black Rock at Cheddar. The late Spring meant that the bluebells we’d come to see were only just coming out , and provided a blue shimmer rather than a spectacular display. We also only saw one butterfly – a female orange tip. However, there was lots more to enjoy. At the entrance to Long Wood, a Black cap sang on a low branch to welcome us. We also heard frequent calls from green woodpeckers, and the surprisingly loud call of nuthatches.
There were cuckoo flowers galore, and wood anemones, and Tony even found us a small patch of moschatel. We also saw several toothworts at the foot of hazels (see another of Diana’s photos attached). A good start to our season of Spring and Summer activities! A good start to our season of Spring and Summer activities!
Please do not reproduce the photos above without permission.
Event Report – CVWG visit to Birds of Prey Centre
Members of Cam Valley Wildlife Group recently went along to an Open Day at the North Somerset Birds of Prey Centre in Congresbury. We were particularly impressed by the large number of different owls at the Centre, including some very beautiful and unusual ones. The flying display in the afternoon gave Members an opportunity to take photos of the birds in flight, before the rain came down.
We were also pleased to enjoy the shelter of the tropical Butterfly House next door, where brightly coloured butterflies delight visitors – one even landing on the head of one of our Members! A really enjoyable day out, especially as there is an excellent café next door.
Owl photos by Gary Kingman. Butterfly photo by Mike Baker
Event report – Avalon Marshes
The intermittent drizzle on the Avalon Marshes visit on Saturday 15 July didn’t dampen our spirits, but the weather meant that there was no sign of the White Admiral butterfly, although we saw plenty of others: Red Admirals on burdock, and ringlets, small white, gatekeeper and skipper. Swifts and swallows swooped around us as we walked to the reserve from the café. We saw many other birds on this beautiful romantic landscape, including bittern and cormorants flying overhead. Lots and lots of swans, including two families on the drain. On the lakes we saw white egrets, green sandpipers, reed bunting and a great spotted woodpecker perched high on a dead tree.
Event report – Langford Lakes Nature Reserve
Members of Cam Valley Wildlife Group had a trip out of the area on Sunday 30 April to visit the beautiful Langford Lakes nature reserve in the Wylye Valley near Warminster. As well as the usual ducks and swans, we saw a Greenshank, a plover, a Red kite and a flock of Lapwings. Highlight of the day was watching a pair of Great crested grebes building their nest on a fallen log in the water, right in front of us. Mike and Carol were lucky enough to spot a kingfisher, but even this did not stop Mike from bemoaning the fact that he hadn’t seen a snipe! Birders and their lists! We were also able to enjoy tasty home made cakes at a pop-up café in the education centre. Photos of the grebes below were taken by Gary and Diana.
Please do not use the above photos without permission. Thank you.