So summer has arrived, bit of a surprise I know, but with the good weather wildlife just seems be anywhere and everywhere, so the next few weeks are a great time to do some really easy creature spotting! Even from the comfort of your back garden while you relax on a lazy afternoon, all sorts of things will pass by – birds, butterflies, dragonflies and ladybirds to name but a few.
Many of the early season baby birds are out in force (some with a bit of their baby-fluff still on them) and if you do go out to your local park or woodland you’ll almost certainly spot your fair share of youngsters learning the ways of their species. Just walking around the Sanctuary this week I’ve seen a buzzard having a disagreement with a crow, come across a young hedgehog setting up a shelter, spotted a gold-ringed dragonfly whizzing around the seal pools and watched newly-fledged goldfinches chasing around the trees.
It’s not unusual for parent birds to have a second clutch of eggs later in the year, and you may remember a few weeks ago that I mentioned our three pairs of swallows who had just returned from abroad. Well, the good news is they all successfully finished raising their young last month, but one of the pairs has this week hatched four more chicks, so once they have fledged they’ll join the other 18-odd swallows singing and dancing in the skies above the Sanctuary all day long. You may also recall the shelducks in the estuary had also returned, and this year two pairs have been seen wandering around the mudflats on low tide with up to 22 ducklings between them!
There is so much activity at the moment it’s hard to miss it, so wherever you are and whatever you are doing, keep your eyes and ears peeled and you should be in for a treat!