Thursday, 5 May 2016


The first pretty green hairstreak butterfly of the year fluttered alongside the path to the hide at the country park enjoying the sunshine on Wednesday 4th. When it landed among the green leaves on the bush it proved hard to see. Hopefully there will be a few more around the park if the sunny weather continues.

Speckled woods have only been seen this spring at the park since Sunday with two on that day and then three on Wednesday.
Other butterflies on Wednesday were holly blue, 4 peacock and 2 small white. A brimstone butterfly was on the wing near the concrete ramp to the park beach on Tuesday, also 3 peacocks, small white and speckled wood too.

Three avocets were on the park pools in the fields on Wednesday while a pair were here the day before. After a while the birds on both days returned to the saltmarsh pools near the Golfhouse.

The black-tailed godwit flock is down to about 35 birds and quite a few of these appear to be pale non-breeding first summer birds. Four lapwing chicks were noted in the fields on Wednesday.
Four greylag geese and a pair of Canada geese and three little egrets were also in the fields.
A pair of pochard and 6 tufted duck were on the pond.

On Tuesday a cuckoo was heard calling from the direction of Bromans Lane, the first one I've heard at the park this spring, although I think others have heard this bird in recent days.
A whimbrel flew along the shore on Tuesday morning.

In the river Colne on Monday 4 common terns and 3 little terns were noted and a whimbrel was by the Point. Also here were a pair of avocets, 100 dunlin and 3 male reed buntings.

On Sunday two male marsh harriers could be seen from the park to the north displaying high in the sky over Langenhoe. A sparrowhawk was also noted circling over the park.
Five lapwing chicks were seen in the grazing fields.

Two pairs of song thrushes seem to be living very close to each other just inside the park entrance, where this male was pictured singing. Their rich fluty songs carry across the north side of the car park.

At West Mersea the turtle dove has been proving elusive recently since its return to Willoughby car park. It was seen on Sunday morning by Steve Entwistle and then on Wednesday by Andy Field.
Twelve swifts were seen by Andy flying over West Mersea on Tuesday and the next day David Nicholls saw three flying over Queen Ann Road.

The cuckoo flew over Firs Chase calling at 5.30am on Wednesday morning.
A red squirrel was at the feeder in Firs Chase on Sunday 1st.

At least two adders have been showing regularly at the park with this pair nicely photographed on Sunday by John Feavearyear. Three were noted on Wednesday and there was also the sad sight of one run over on the road near the park entrance that day.

Patches of bluebells can be found tucked away in corners of the country park.

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