"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Another trip to my local Nature Reserve

I returned to Marsh Lane Nature Reserve earlier this week on Tuesday afternoon, 29th October. I noticed dark clouds gathering on the horizon as I left home and just managed to make it to Oak Hide which overlooks the Railway Pool before the heavens opened!

View from Oak Hide towards Siden Hill Wood taken after the rain had finally passed

The Black Swan was again on Railway Pool - if you click on the photo to enlarge you may be able to make it out next to a pair of Mute Swans - sorry for heavily cropped photo but the swans were a long way away! I really could do with a 400mm lens or better still a new camera set-up but as I can't justify the cost I'm stuck with what I have for now!

A rainbow appeared as I left the hide.

I had a quick look through the screens at the Reedbed Pool and finished off the visit with a quick look at Car Park Pool from the hide near the car park.

I added quite a few species to the list of birds seen here so far - Carrion Crow, Moorhen, Blackbird, Pochard, Wren and Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Blue and Great Tits on the feeders. I also saw a couple of jays collecting acorns along the Old (Kenilworth) Road which leads to the reserve and a Grey Squirrel was the first mammal seen there. A Common Darter was spotted by the car park.

I've just received a Newsletter for the reserve for the period July to September and it reinforces my view that its a good site for butterflies. One or two Clouded Yellows (a species I've never seen) were on the reserve throughout the last two weeks of August. A Hummingbird Hawkmoth was also observed.

One side of the reserve is bordered by a railway line (sorry real rubbish photo - it was taken into the sun!!) and

this reminded me that the dreaded HS2, if it goes ahead, will come exceedingly close to this reserve. I've checked out the HS2 interactive map and suspect if may even cross one of the fields of the reserve on the other side of the Old (Kenilworth) road which is not good news. Checking out the Warwickshire Wildlife Trust website it appears that the route of HS2 will affect 16 ancient woodland sites in Warwickshire and Solihull and 6 sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI's) are within 500 metres of the line in Warwickshire.


Bovey Belle said...

The Black Swan is amazing. Is it an escapee from a private collection?

As for Clouded Yellow butterflies, when we were living in Dorset we saw them regularly and one year, the Summer of the Clouded Yellows we called it, an absolute CLOUD of them came over from France. We were on the coast path near Encombe, and saw something coming towards us, and as it got closer, it was an absolute host of Clouded Yellows, which eventually flew over and around us, surrounding us. Surreal and really magical.

Countryside Tales said...

the butterflies will be fun to check out next summer- how exciting, and always lovely to have a new place to see them :-)

Ragged Robin said...

Bovey Belle Many thanks. Yes I would imagine its an escapee. There was a Bar-headed Goose there a few weeks back - presume escapee also.

Wonderful to read about your Cloud of Clouded Yellows - what a wonderful experience. Something as lovely as that happening can remain with you forever :)

Chris Rohrer said...

Sounds like you've found your patch:) As for the Swans....very cool finds BUT yes, they do tend to like that far away stuff:) As for that massacre......:(

SeagullSuzie said...

You'll have so many new things to look for next year, how exciting. Oh yes a 400mm lens would be great. I'm after a macro lens for Christmas, but maybe a 400mm sometime later when I've saved up.

Ragged Robin said...

Countryside Tales - Many thanks - looking forward to Spring and Summer :)

Chris Rohrer Hi Chris - Many thanks - yes, at long last, I think I have :)

The annoying thing was that on one of my initial visits the swans were right by the hide but I hadn't taken the camera :(

Still "fighting" the massacre. Truly awful :( Govt got population estimates all wrong - far less badgers than they thought (they really haven't a clue!!!) and they killed very few. So they've extended licences to try and kill more :( 3 weeks in Somerset and 8 WEEKS in Gloucestershre. Totally livid!!! :(

Seagull Suzie - Many thanks - yes can't wait :) I had a macro lens Cmas/bday before last but still learning how to use!! Would really like a Canon or Nikon set up as don't want to buy any more lenses for Olympus as, apart from the extortionate dslr range for professionals, they seem to be moving away from dslrs to concentrate on pen system of cameras etc. :(

Wendy said...

That's exciting news about the butterflies; there should be some good sightings next year.
But that's also terrible news about the sites that will be destroyed.

Margaret Adamson said...

HI RR Good to see the Black Swan again and this patch for you will be wonderful to visit anytime but especially in the spring perhaps.

Ragged Robin said...

Wendy - Many thanks - looking forward to butterflies next year :) Sad news re: wildlife sites and HS2 :(

Margaret Adamson Many thanks Margaret - the site seems to hold great promise :)

Em Parkinson said...

I feel the same way about my camera....it's all I can afford and it just has to do. Lovely to see the black swan, however distantly!

Ragged Robin said...

Em Parkinson Thanks :) You get some cracking shots with your camera though!!! Having looked at prices of some of top of range Canon and Nikon lenses think I'm stuck with current set up for ever!!! Perhaps I ought to investigate Photoshop more and improve that way :)

Hopefully, the black swan (which seems resident) will eventually come close enough again and I'll have camera with me!