Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bright sunshine but a chill breeze

I left the house at just after 1130 and it was warm at the time. There were lots of people in the park, especially dog walkers. Everyone seemed to be cheerful and it was a really good atmosphere.

I wasn't expecting to see many differences between today and earlier in the week, but there were still some new faces.

I saw several bee-like insects which I have never seen before (photo on the left) but I think is Bombulius major due to its enormous proboscis and its habit of hovering My book says that it is completely harmless. I'll post some more photos in the next few days. I also saw the first hover-fly that I've noticed this season as well as bees, butterflies and flies. Amongst the flowers I have noticed in last week or so are some bright celandines in the Woodland and cowslips in the ecological park (of which there are probably going to be 100s behind the windmill).

There were no frogs at Stave Hill pond, but there were two mallards there where I have never seen aquatic birds before. Last year it was the domain of dragonflies and damselflies, which have yet to emerge. Last year's attractive reed-bed opposite the Stave Hill pond has a reservoir of slightly orange water in it, which is hopefully a good sign for the future regrowth of the reeds later in the season.

At Globe pond there were a lot of mallards and coots. Between the stirring up of the water and the loud voices they were creating a din to rival the school next door. They were certainly doing a good job of oxygenating the pond.

I saw one fox. I rounded a corner and there it was. i don't know which one of us jumped most. It moved very quickly to hide itself in the undergrowth, but before it left its scarcoptic mange was horribly visible.

It became increasingly cold and I eventually cut my walk short an hour and a half later, returning home to find some much-needed warmer clothing.

Now, at just before 4pm it is somewhat overcast and distinctly chilly. It was good to enjoy the sunshine whilst it lasted.

Cherry Laurel
Prunus laurocerasus

Bee. No idea which one.
There are dozens and none of the markings on this one match anything in my book.

Lesser Celandine
Ranunculus ficaria

Primula veris

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