A stunning day on the Reserve with warm autumnal sunshine for most of the day and lovely blue skies. As a result most of the early bird activity was in the air with three Common Buzzard, one Sparrowhawk and a Red Kite being the cause of very jittery group of gulls on the millpond. Again there was no sign of either of the Mediterrean Gulls from earlier in the week amongst the 200+ mixed gull flock but Barry Clough did manage to find a huge Great Black-backed Gull lurking with intent and completely dwarfing its Herring Gull accomplices. Great Black-back's used to be a scarce species at Warnham but in recent winters have become much more frequent in appearance and there deep, gruff calls can often be heard booming above the Black-headed Gull cries.
Great Black-backed Gull - B. Clough
The Reflection Pool has now been in situe for approaching a year and most of the wildlife has become accustom to using it as a drinking and bathing resource throughout the seasons. This has resulted in more visitors managing to catch some quite stunning photographs which was the original aim of the pool in the first place. Hopefully as the numbers of birds using the feeding station in front of Woodpecker Hide start to build with the colder weather we still start to see even more wonderful photographs appearing. Barry once again was in the right place at the right time when he caught this Grey Squirrel coming down to the edge of the pool.
Grey Squirrel at the Reflection Pool - B. Clough
Habitat management has really swung into action on the Reserve this week with the warden team getting stuck into the compartment of Willow Carr that is being coppiced this year. Some of the timber is used for crafts and making bird feeders but much of the twiggy brash is burnt. This week we have been lucky enough to have Guy lend us a helping hand. Guy was on work experience with us all week and has helped with many jobs such as livestock management, felling, coppicing, helping to run volunteer tasks as well as his favorite job of the week...leaf blowing! This is Guy below doing what he enjoyed most!