Steve and I were putting some electric fencing out on Carsehall Bog this morning in preparation for cattle to return to graze the grassland and maintain a suitable sward of grass that will promote richer botanical diversity. Whilst down there, we took the opportunity to spot a few bits and pieces, including three Wheatear (a migratory species I’d not seen on the reserve before) on the way down to the bog.
Most of the breeding population of Pink-footed Geese will by now be on their way back to their breeding grounds in Iceland. There is still a contingent of late departures that may be seen feeding on the nearby fields, and also a few non-breeders that never make the journey. I suspect this may have been one of them.
The second species of butterfly to be seen this week was also in action today- this Peacock was seen sunning itself for some much needed warmth, after what has been a long winter indeed.
The ditch alongside the electric fence is really starting to grow in nicely, after it was re-directed as part of the Carsehall wetland restoration project 2 years ago. It was positively teeming with young trout and minnows.
Something has definitely been having a feast on the fence posts down there- I suspect Short-eared Owl pellets, but the petrified frogs? Otters perhaps? I confess it wasn’t found on the post…
On our way back we stopped off at Burleigh to have a look at the ponds. Still a little early for Large Red Damselflies, but the tadpoles are out of their eggs and in the midst of feeding on the remains of the spawn at the moment. quite a site to see a mass of wee black tadpoles writhing about on their own spawn!
It was also great to see a yellow carpet of celandines out at Burleigh- it finally feels like spring is in the air! Let’s hope it lasts….