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Wildlife round-up this week (1st May)

Despite the ongoing cold nights spring is in full swing and we have had reports of plants and animals from within the parish almost every day.

Bird highlights include a Wheatear on Palmers Field, some nice summer visitors with a Cuckoo and Tree Pipit recorded last weekend and a Ravens being seen throughout the parish, including in the village. Many of our summer visitors are now here with increasing Swallow numbers and warblers (Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Willow Warblers and Whitethroats) in full song. Look out for House Martins, Swifts and possibly even Spotted Flycatchers in the coming days.

The hedgehog sightings keep coming in giving us great information about these garden favourites. Please check out the map and let us know if you know of hogs who are not

yet on there!

We have smooth newts breeding in a Kandahar pond, but I bet there are many more of these through the village - consider trying a newt trap if you have a pond and want to have some fun!

Slow worms were seen in a Lottage Road garden and were the only reptile on our list this week.

It has been a bit cold for insects this week but butterflies are starting to take to the wing with good numbers of Peacock, Tortoiseshell, Green-veined White, Holly Blue, Brimstone and Orange-tips as well as occasional Commas and Speckled Woods. Other butterflies should be coming onto the wing now so keep your eyes open for blues, coppers, skippers and Duke of Burgundys. There have not been many moths out at night with only seven individuals of four species caught over two trapping nights this week.

Spring is a great time for flowers and the bluebells at Love's Copse are in full bloom and well worth a visit. Keep an eye out for the lovely Snake's Head Fritillary as well as a bit of an spring treat if you are lucky enough to see one. Woodland anemones and celandines are being joined by stitchwort and the cowslips are starting to come into their own in the fields and there is now some early campion in the hedgerows.

There are also some records from the small, but perfectly-formed, plants in the churchyard to see on the sightings page.

The coming week is a bit milder and the gentle rain will also be good for the wildlife so it is worth risking/braving the showers and getting out looking for wildlife. Please do let us know what you have seen so that your sightings can be shared with and inspire others.

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