Trip reports

Broadwater Warren RSPB Reserve (Sue Carter & Steve Goodrich)

Broadwater Warren RSPB Reserve (Sue Carter & Steve Goodrich)
Silver-washed fritillary [Steve Goodrich]

Sunday, 16 July 2017

This field trip was not all about the birds but pitched to coincide with the emergence of both silver-washed fritillaries and white admirals. The weather was overcast and humid once the sun started to break through.

We arrived as warden Alan Loweth came to open the gate to the car park and he mentioned that he would be giving a talk to Medway Group in 2018. Today, he and his helpers were doing a census of the dormice population in the wooded areas of the reserve. He also informed us that new sections of the reserve had been opened up and suggested that we do our walk in reverse following the green arrows to take in the new areas. This proved a refreshing change for the ten participants and our walk was accompanied in parts by the whistle of a steam train on the Spa Valley Railway!

It's fair to say that butterflies and invertebrates were more numerous than the birds. Butterflies were represented by silver-spotted skipper, silver-washed fritillaries, white admirals, red admirals, both small and large whites, gatekeepers, meadow browns, brimstones and ringlets.

Invertebrates seen were scorpion fly, several harvestmen resting on a fence, shrill carder bee, white-tailed bumblebee, banded demoiselle and a possible Norfolk hawker dragonfly. Wood ants and their nests were everywhere and a common lizard was found basking on a log by the Decoy Pond.

Birds of note were yellowhammer, chiffchaff, whitethroat, stock dove, nuthatch, treecreeper, blackcap, great-spotted woodpecker, long-tailed tit, goldfinch, carrion crow and herring gull and both blue and great tits.

We all arrived home happy but weary after our four hour walk in beautiful surroundings with very pleasant company.

Sue Carter & Steve Goodrich