St Nicks

Centre for nature and green living

Category: Wildwatch

Wildwatch: July 2015 Sightings

Highlights More breeding bird evidence, and a bad hair day for a scarce bird by Tang Hall Beck.. Warmer July weather brings out more butterflies and dragonflies, plus two more new hoverflies for the reserve.. “Butterfly bush” now in full bloom, and there’s Bindweed everywhere! Weather July started off hot and sunny, with temperatures reaching […]

Posted 5 August 2015 | Categories: Wildwatch | Tags: blackcap, breeding, Bullfinch, Corn Marigold, Gatekeeper butterfly, goldcrest, Goldfinch, Hoverfly, juvenile birds, kingfisher, Knapweed, Large Skipper, Ringlet butterfly, Shieldbugs, six-spot burnet, Soapwort, Song Thrush, water vole, Yellow Rattle

Wildwatch: June 2015

Highlights A summer visitor, virtually missing for the past two years, returns.. a spectacular flower display along the Tang Hall Beck path (see below).. Butterfly numbers low, but a spectacular hoverfly brightens a dull month.. more breeding evidence of a nationally endangered species Weather Generally a cool month, with temperatures ranging from 12 – 16C […]

Posted 14 July 2015 | Categories: Wildwatch | Tags: blackcap, common whitethroat, dame's violet, dog rose, Green-veined White butterfly, Hairy Shield Bug, Holly Blue butterfly, kingfisher, laburnum, Large Skipper Butterfly, Malachite Beetle, Mugwort Gall Fly, Ribwort Plantain, Wasp Beetle, white campion

June 2015: Spotlight on … Ladybirds

Ladybirds are probably Britain’s best-loved insects. They are believed to be named after ‘Our Lady’ – the Virgin Mary – whose seven joys and seven sorrows are said to be depicted in our commonest native ladybird, the seven-spot. The 7-spot was also the most numerous at St Nicks until the arrival of the Harlequin. Ladybirds […]

Posted 22 June 2015 | Categories: Spotlight on..., Wildwatch | Tags: ladybirds, spotlight

Wildwatch: May 2015

Highlights Breeding evidence at St Nicks of a nationally endangered species; cold, windy May brought out quality rather than quantity of St Nicks invertebrates; a record number of this elusive summer visitor; white is the predominant colour at St Nicks. Weather Generally cool and breezy, although a sunny Wildwatch on the 13th brought out seven […]

Posted 5 June 2015 | Categories: Wildwatch | Tags: blackcap, Germander Speedwell, Harlequin Ladybird, Muscid Fly, Oak Flowers, Orange Tip Butterfly, peacock butterfly, Soldier Beetle, Water Aven, water vole

Wildwatch: April 2015

Highlights: First sighting of this bird since 2013.. regular sightings of this endangered mammal.. babies rescued from the pond..Met Office says sunniest April since records began, but insect life slow to appear on cold and not-so-sunny Wednesdays at St Nicks. Weather: Variable conditions throughout the month, but with temperatures slowly rising from 7C on the […]

Posted 7 May 2015 | Categories: Wildwatch | Tags: beefly, blackcap, Hoverfly, water vole

April 2015: Spotlight on … Dunnocks

The Dunnock (Prunella modularis) is a common bird at St Nicks. It’s also known as “Hedge Sparrow”, “Hedge Warbler” and “Hedge Accentor”. The latter is the most accurate of names, because the Dunnock is neither a “sparrow” or a “warbler”, but is a member of the Accentor family of birds. But most people call them “Dunnocks”! […]

Posted 20 April 2015 | Categories: Spotlight on..., Wildwatch | Tags: Dunnock

Wildwatch: March 2015 Sightings

Highlights First summer bird visitor returns.. insects slow to awake in cold month but first hoverflies of the year seen, then a butterfly.. trees in flower! Weather Temperatures stayed around 7C on all four Wildwatch Wednesdays, but managed to creep up to 10C later on the 25th. Most days were sunny, or had sunny intervals, and […]

Posted 9 April 2015 | Categories: Wildwatch | Tags: Blackthorn, Blue Tit, Chiffchaff, comma butterfly, Gorse Shieldbug, harvestman, kingfisher, Lungwort, millipede, Primrose, Violet, Water Rail, wren

March 2015: Spotlight on… Coltsfoot

Coltsfoot Tussilago farfara One of the earliest wild flowers of spring, Coltsfoot is very easy to identify. It’s a member of the Asteraceae or Composite family, and the bright yellow flowers look a bit like miniature Dandelions, to which they are related. Each flower grows on its own separate stem, but unlike Dandelions the stems […]

Posted 24 March 2015 | Categories: Spotlight on..., Wildwatch | Tags: coltsfoot, spotlight

Wildwatch: February 2015 Sightings

Highlights Snowdrops everywhere.. Water skulker and Tree “mouse” return.. a February shieldbug first, and a semaphoring fly! Weather Snow showers greeted us on the 4th, with a chilly 1C. But during the month, temperatures slowly rose and we had bright days on the 18th and 25th. Birds Last month’s statement that the December Water Rail […]

Posted 9 March 2015 | Categories: Wildwatch | Tags: Alder, aspen, brown rat, coltsfoot, Ensign Fly, Gorse Shieldbug, Great spotted woodpecker, Grey Wagtail, hazel, lesser celandine, millipede, Pygmy Woodlouse, Rabbit, redwing, Seven-spot Ladybird, Smooth Newt, Snowdrop, Song Thrush, sparrowhawk, Tree Creeper, Water Rail, water vole

February 2015: Spotlight on… Creatures found under logs and stones

Ground level at St Nicks reserve offers a sheltered home for many creatures, particularly in the leaf litter or under stones, bricks and decaying logs. Over the past year the Wildwatch group has spent a little time exploring this hidden world, whose inhabitants include worms, slugs, snails, woodlice, centipedes, millipedes, spiders, ground beetles and various […]

Posted 18 February 2015 | Categories: Spotlight on..., Wildwatch | Tags: Centipede, Ground Beetle, millipede, Springtail, Woodlouse