We made a quick trip over to Lodmoor after work yesterday to check for, among other things, the presence of a cattle egret that had ben reported earlier. Disappointingly, it wasn't on view but it was a fine afternoon for scanning the marsh for anything of interest. Whimbrel and common terns put in a welcome appearance but the highlight for me was Nick's discovery of this common lizard basking in the late warmth of the sun, just a few yards from the viewing shelter. It had chosen a Diam bar wrapper as its temporary sun lounger (other vegetable oil-based confectionery wrappers are no doubt available on occasion in the vicinity), and allowed me to get close enough for a picture. It kindly stayed put for several minutes before deciding to crawl off casually into the grass. They can be very tolerant of the intrusion if you carefully creep close to get a better look but can be easily spooked by quick movements or if you get too near. If you wait a few minutes at a respectful distance it will creep back, check that danger has passed and take up its favourite position again.
The encounter was particularly exciting for me as (a) it is a lizard and lizards are fab, and (b) it is my first for the year. Also, records for this species at Lodmoor are meagre to say the least so this little gem was a very welcome sighting - let's hope it's not alone.
Only the second common lizard i've seen over there inspite of Anne's recent efforts to survey reptiles and amphibians. Plenty of slow worms and the occasional grass snake, so a welcome discovery.
Gorgeous photo, love the back feet :-) Nice to hear there are lizards there.
A good find, down in the jungle.
The Cattle Egret spent the afternoon and early-evening near the inner-end of the centre-drain - mostly hidden from the Viewing Shelter by a bramble-clump but showing fairly well, if distantly, from the west path. A drake Garganey put in a fleeting appearance nearby before doing a very effective disappearing trick.