13 Apr 2015


Colin Miles

Apr 7th 2015: A gloriously sunny, warm day, in complete contrast to last week. And the Moth trap which John had set out worked so Marigold was able to show us all the first Moths of the year, including the splendid embroidered one she was wearing! The total count, apart from those which escaped were:
Clouded Drab, Early Grey, Dotted Border, Hebrew Character (2), Common Quaker (2), Engrailed Shoulder Stripe (2), Streamer (2)

On up along the back of the Theatr Botanica to the Apothecaries bed. Bitter Cress, Common Dog Violets and large Daisies which might be Feverfew or Scentless Mayweed, Toadflax along the wall and Speedwell by the path, probably planted, plus Coltsfoot in the beds, Dandelions and Lesser Celandine by and on the steps. Lots of Barren Strawberry everywhere especially down by on the grassy slopes above Llyn Canol.

Along by Spring Woods masses of Primroses, Dog Violets, Lesser Celandine and White and Buff-tail Bumblebees searching for nest holes. Bird song in profusion with Dunnocks, Chiffchaff, Thrushes, Robins, Blackbirds, Chaffinches, very loud Wrens and on the ground the same pair of Nuthatches that we saw last week. But pride of place has to go to the tiny blue Butterfly that Jan spotted hovering round the Lesser Celandine, later identified as a Holly Blue – lots of Ivy around for it.

Also spotted for the first time was a Red-tail Bumblebee whilst Honey bees, Hoverflies and Solitary Bees were out foraging on the Hellebores. Various Butterflies put in an appearance including a Peacock, Tortoiseshell and a White which may have been a female Orange Tip. Later on a male was spotted, a true sign of Spring according to SpringWatch.

Down to the dipping ponds where we were greeted by Whirligigs, Water Boatmen, Pond Skaters and Palmate Newts.

On the lakes themselves were 3 pairs of Teal, a solitary Coot, 3 pairs of Canada Geese, plenty of Moorhens and Mallards. And down on the stream by the entrance to Waun Las a Grey Wagtail and 3 Shiny Dock Beetles. Lady’s Smock, otherwise known as the Cuckoo Flower, was starting to appear in various places, but alas the hole in the Bull has now been closed up. Where has the Wren gone?

Many thanks as always to John and Peter for their splendid photos and Hazel for her notes which I have incorporated into the main text as they are too long and detailed to go in this blog. If any volunteer or member wants to join us please send an email to Jane Down– you DON’T have to be an expert in anything, just interested. If you find an injured bird, hedgehog or other wild animal and want help and advice then phone the Gower Bird hospital. on 01792 371630.