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April 2020 – Reserve

22 Apr 2020

Our team reflect on April

The beginning of April still felt like early spring but the warm weather brought out early insects including five species of butterflies and three bumblebee. The quarry was also alive with mining bees with green tiger beetle as well as dark edged bee fly.

During the first week of April we counted eleven avocet on the Wader Scrape but still no sign of either them or gulls starting to nest. Around the reserve we found a good number of lapwing hopefully setting up territory, possibly nine or ten pairs. There were also at least four skylark singing which was great to hear.

Last week there were some signs of spring migration with singing blackcaps and willow warbler along with two swallows who have returned already and tend to nest in the conservation centre building. Other signs of spring included the first orange tip butterfly and green hairstreak. The avocet count on the Wader Scrape has now gone up to twelve but there’s still no sign of them sitting. The lapwing do seem to have started sitting with three birds on the Wensum wetlands and two on the Wader Scrape cultivated plot. The quarry was quieter during last week’s visit but ashy mining bee were flying. A camera trap has been put out on the river at Kingfisher Bridge so, if anything interesting pops up, we hope to bring you some clips of this in due course.

This week the cold wind seems to have reduced bird and insect activity however highlights include the first large red damselfly which has just emerged at Kingfisher Bridge. The first reed warbler was also heard singing. Avocets are now up to fourteen on the Wader Scrape, in amongst five hundred black headed gulls and six Mediterranean gulls, but there’s no sign of nesting yet. The coots are very busy building theirs. Lapwing are slightly down this week with eight pairs spotted around the reserve.