Saturday, 24 April 2010

Adders and ravens

For my 30th birthday earlier in the week I took a trip with friend Jo to the Forest of Dean, hoping for some spring migrants. I wasn't disappointed and caught up with a most stunning male pied flycatcher singing and checking out a nest site at the RSPB's Nagshead reserve, Nearby a male wood warbler was singing while the muddy signs of wild boar were evident!! A family of 20 piglets (or are they called boarlets!) had apparently been in the muddy pool a little early. You could see where mum had rubbed her muddy body against an oak tree. We tried to follow their track but to no avail!

We then popped over to New Fancy View and spotted 7 or 8 female fallow deer and found a basking adder! My second ever and this time I didn't try to pick it up!!

Later in the week I organised two climbers from the British Mountaineering Council
to visit a raven's nest in the Avon Gorge with thanks to the National Trust, There were two chicks in the nest, around three and a half weeks old. They had unique ID metal rings put on their right legs and were then safely put back into their nest. They should leave the nest in two or three weeks time.

This morning I've just got back from leading a birdsong identification walk for Mandy Leivers and the Avon Gorge and Downs Wildlife Project, Last night I was showing images and playing birdsong as preparation for then going out today and putting it all into practice. Blackbirds, songthrushes, robins, blackcaps, dunnocks and chiffchaffs were all singing away. Highlights included a treecreeper and a male roe deer sprinting across the Downs!!

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