Down to the New Forest today. Outside temperatures pushing 28 degrees. So we tried to find a bit of shade in the woods.
The bird feeder at an RSPB hut attracted many Siskins and some other visitors.
Young Great Tit.
Bolderwood has an area where the deer are fed so the chances of seeing New Forest Deer closer than in the open Forest is more likely. Given that we only saw one female Fallow Deer today.
Fallow deer were first brought to Britain from the Mediterranean in Roman times, they were kept within enclosures. Following the collapse of the Roman Empire, Fallow deer died out in Britain. In the 11th century Fallow deer were reintroduced they were kept in parks gradually their populations increased and they became an important source of venison for aristocratic tables. As the fashion for deer parks declined in the 15th century, many parks fell into disrepair and escapee deer from these parks became the foundation of the free-living population in Britain today.
Spent the afternoon and early evening at the Beach. We got to the sea as the tide was going out. While in the sea I watched two lads pack away their fishing rods into their works van, then throw a pile of paper wrapping and plastic bags from their fishing bait onto the path which blew along in the wind. They then finished off their cans of larger and tossed those onto the beach, before getting into the van and driving off. Two elderly ladies out walking reached the rubbish which was blowing towards them collected it up putting into a bag before depositing it into a rubbish bin. When I got out of the water I retrieved the cans from the beach. You are never more than a few hundred yards at Meon Shore from a council provided litter bin along the waterfront. From March to the end of the October there is a litter picker. I am glad there are more who try to care for the waterfront than the few who just have no respect for this lovely environment.
As the light was starting to go we backed up and left for home. Driving up the road I had just said to my other half “Two days on the coast and I had not taken any pictures.” Seconds later we passed a fox walking up the verge by the sailing club, it sat down and had a scratch! I pulled over and took his picture.
Much more of a town fox that the one I saw earlier in the year down on the nature reserve.
Below link to 2017 fox pictures.
Holiday Beach. After a few days of sunshine, the beach is a magnet for those who want to enjoy the sun sea and sand.
The beach has both a shipping and industrial background the water quality is good which support a rich range of wildlife on the shore in the sea and in the air. Nature and man in balance? (as long as the council empty the rubbish bins and people use them).
Horned Poppies and Mallow are now in flower on the upper part of the beach.
The Shelduck chicks have grown and there remain 5 little one.
Last year a pair of Mute Swans had 3 signets only one survived. This year a family have appeared from the Titchfield Haven with 7 signets all of which are a good size.
Towards the end of Southampton Water watching and taking pictures of both the Coastguard Search and Rescue helicopter and a tern both hovering over the water.
shrimps seemed to be on the menu for the tern.
low tide safari and a closer look at what is under your feet.
Oysters seem to have increased in both numbers and size in recent years. I think these are non-native Pacific Oysters.
The most interesting thing I found on the beach today was a mass of eggs which were like jelly fingers and the whole mass overfilled my hand in size when I picked them up. I removed them from the water to take a picture and have a closer look before putting them back. They were free-floating but I do not know if they were attached to something.
Had a look online and found that they are Squid eggs.
Cuttlefish are common it the Solent but this is the first evidence I have seen that Squid are about.
I am new to try to capture some of my nature spots in motion. What I found interesting it the short Avocet film is
- How noisy the Black-Headed Gulls are in the background.
- If you watch the movie how the pond skimmers are also captured in the shots on the water surface.
The black spots on these still photographs (below) I thought were spots on the camera sensor and it needed a clean, but after seeing the movie the spots are water skimmer.
Not the best weather today, Avocet numbers have increased and were closer to the hide today.
Avocets feed by sight picking food from the surface of water or mud. In poorer visibility they forage by touch, sweeping their upcurved bill from side to side through water or to locate hidden prey.
Black-headed gull on a mission.
Further to my blog earlier in the week of a female House Sparrow feeding a young bird this post shows a male House Sparrow.