It's the week of Late Night Opening! Make sure you come down and visit!
Why not pop down after work, enjoy a nice stroll after a busy day of work! Rye Meads will be open until 8pm all this week!
Sunset at Rye Meads by Marion Moss
Let us know what you see, keep an eye out for any of the following -
This is what has been seen in July:
Visitor Centre - kestrel, sparrowhawk, green woodpecker, great spotted woodpecker, chaffinch, green finch, gold finch, great tit, blue tit, robin, dunnock, blackbird, song thrush, pheasant, white throat and humming bird hawk moth - seen yesterday in the wildlife garden, have a look at this photo below Richard Revels (rspb-images.com)
Draper hide - little grebe and three chicks, green sandpiper, common sandpiper, wood sandpiper (19-23 July), oystercatcher (18 July), lapwing, little egret, grey heron, gadwall, mallard, teal, pochard, tufted duck, garganey (first seen 21 July), Canada goose, Egyptian goose, black headed gull, common tern, coot, moorhen, reed bunting, reed warbler, and sedge warbler.
Have a look at this fab picture of the garganey at the Draper hide taken by Graham Leadbeater. Both birds are garganey - there were three on the reserve over the weekend! The bird on the left is a young bird (even though it look slightly bigger) and the one on the right is an adult.
Ashby hide - grey heron, tufted duck, pochard, gadwall, mallard, coot, moorhen, common tern, great spotted woodpecker, reed warbler and sedge warbler.
Lagoon hides (Tern and Gadwall hides) - black headed gull, cormorant, common tern, tufted duck, pochard, gadwall, mallard, little grebe, black necked grebe (1-3 July), little egret, and kingfisher.
Trails - water vole (we've had great views of the water vole. As you walk from the centre to the Draper hide you go over a bridge/ boardwalk in the shape of an 'L'. After the bend look into the vegetation in the ditch, try and spot plants shaking and that will be the vole!), long tailed tit, blue tit, great tit, cettis warbler, sedge warbler, reed warbler, willow warbler, robin, blackbird, song thrush, chiffchaff, green woodpecker, great spotted woodpecker, and water rail.As you walk along keep an eye out for the little creatures hiding away, and other signs of life. Along the trails we've seen fox, muntjac, a badger latrine, a bee's nest, a wasps nest, spiders (there are some amazing webs!), cricket, ladybird, fly, butterfly (small copper, large skipper, ringlet, red admiral, gatekeeper, comma, small white, large white, speckled wood, holly blue etc), dragonflies, damselflies, moths, snails etc
Kingfisher news - the second brood of young fledged on 21 July! At least three young were seen flying about. At the moment the adults are incubating the eggs of the third brood. Wow! Three broods, they've been busy this year, I expect they'll need at rest at the end of the season. It's been a few years since a pair of kingfishers managed to have three broods, so this pair are doing well. It will be a couple of weeks until the young hatch. If you do want to see these amazing birds that will be the time - when they are incubating they take turns incubating and change over every couple of hours or so. When they are feeding they are in and out every ten minutes.
Exciting times... Okay, firstly the second brood of kingfishers fledged yesterday! By the sounds of it there was a flurry of activity in the morning! Three young kingfishers left the nest for the first time to explore and stretch their wings. We only saw three young birds fledge - there could be more young from this brood that we didn't see fledge! Kingfishers can have upto seven young, and they can feldge over a couple of days, or perhaps could have fledged earlier in the morning.By the sounds of it the young seemed hesitant and uncertain, two of the three sat on a perch near the hide and the other flew away. The young will only stay around for up to four days, then the parents will drive them out of the territory.
Check out the gallery as CLJ got a nice picture of one of the young.
Meanwhile... the adults are doing their thing (ahem) to get ready for their next brood. It is looking good, so fingers crossed everyone. The male has been bringing the lady chocolates and flowers fish (it's the kingfisher version of chocolates and flowers). They have also been investigating the bank and mating. They hvae been seen investigating the first hole that they used this year - they used it to raise their first brood and moved out for their second as inside it gets rather mucky and smelly. By the time the kingfishers are ready for the third brood the first hole will have calmed down and would be fine to use. However, they could end up using a completely differnt hole, so watch this space!
Peter Hewitt ( known as Pixellence (Pete) on here) took these fab pictures of the exchange of fish between the pair:
Amazing pictures Pete!
The wood sandpiper is still around at the Draper hide, along with six green sandpiper and a young garganey.
Just a quick blog today... but I thought I would let you know as soon as I could!
We have just spotted a wood sandpiper at the Draper hide! Have a look at this picture - its a bit blurry but you get the idea!
(Wood sandpiper at the Draper hide on Monday 19 July)
The wood sandpiper is quite similar to the green sandpiper which is a regular visit to the reserve. Have a look at these pictures:
Green sandpiper Wood sandpiper
Out of the two, the wood sandpiper has longer legs, a longer neck and is overall more slender. The wood sandpiper has less defined brest-band colouring, larger markings on the back and a distinctive pale eye stripe. The wood sandpiper has greeny/ yellow legs, where as the green sandpiper has green legs.