Probably the chillier and wetter weather has kept them further south for now. The weekend's looking warmer, so that's a good time, as they need lots of flying insects once they finish their journey to build themselves up for the breeding season.
Nice! I think I heard one at about 6.00 this evening – Barry Rd near Peckham Rye, so it sounds like they're back. If only for two months or so. It's funny that we think of them as 'our' birds that spend the winter in Africa, when in reality it makes more sense to see them as African birds that just breed here.
Birds seem to be on a feeding frenzy which I expect is due to fledglings having hatched. Never worked out why they favour one feeder over another, which will switch too. Put a bird bath up on one of the feeder poles which the wood pigeons perch on and crap in! Blue tits, great tits, robin and gold finches. No green finches, long tailed tits, coal tits so far this year, nor woodpeckers, thrushes and jays, which is a shame. Wonder if it is a weather and food availability thing, ie they only come into gardens when food is short in their more natural environment. Occasional doves, and plenty of crows and blackbirds. Green squawky things fortunately stay outside the garden. The football cones over the open feeders seem to have stopped the bally squirrels which is a welcome surprise.
Yo, my first woodpecker of the year, and for the first time someone pointed out the swifts high overhead. I'm very excited but need to go the Lidl as they are eating the bird food at a great rate (not the swifts or course). Foxes also seem to like it when it falls to the ground.
Fox ate some bred and then shat on it. I thought they normally marked territory by spraying not pooing. Squigy.
I saw my first green woodpecker recently down Greendale. It was plotted on the ground by the poplar trees in JAGS field and I thought at first it was injured because it was just sitting there. It was fine though as it flapped off after a while. Probably cheesed off with me staring at it
In Greendale this morning I managed to get a close up look at a butterfly (or possibly moth) of a type I've never seen before and cannot find on butterfly and moth guides on the web. I hope someone can help me identify it. It was sort of medium, or bit on the small, size for a butterfly with wings which were very dark brown and dotted prominently and very beautifully with pink spots. Sounds like I'd been drinking I know but not the case. Can anyone here tell me what it might have been?
I'm not sure what the butterfly was, but a good way to find out would be to join the Friends of Green Dale / Friends of Dog Kennel Hill wood Spring Walk tomorrow at 2pm. Led by Rachel Dowse of London Wildlife Trust, we're meeting at the picnic benches in Dog Kennel Hill Open Space (next to Sainsbury's) at 1.50pm. It's free and all are welcome.
Thank you Lynne, I think you're right. It looked more dramatic and stylish to me at the time but I think it must have been either a dingy skipper or more likely a grizzly skipper. Never seen or heard of these creatures before and delighted to have been introduced to one! Thanks also Chris99 I didn't know about the walk.
Visited the Nature Trail at the Horniman a couple of days back for the first time (I know its been there a while but new to me). Short and nothing amazing this visit but good for a quick half hour in “woodland”.
Entrance to the start is from London Road - up the steps just after Wood Vale and then through the gate on the left. Check the opening hours on the Horniman website (currently 9-4). You go to the end and return. It’s a “woodland” path so tree roots, steps and could be muddy in wet weather and no dogs. You never escape the sirens but if you are passing its worth checking out.