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A Variety of This and That

Monday, April 2nd 2018

The Little Grebe was fishing and then taking vegetation to his mate, although I do not think she was over impressed with his enthusiasm to start nesting just yet!  The fish was identified as a Rudd.  John was able to catch this great photograph.

Little Grebe with Rudd

Back in the warmth of the Activity Room more excitement as we found eggs from our Mud Snails.  We await their hatching.

Mud Snail eggs

Some of our Holly leaves have brown marks on them.  Upon investigation Christine identified them as Holly Leaf Miners.  The tiny fly Phytomyza ilicis, lays her eggs in the young, newly grown soft leaves.  The larva hatches and begins to mine between the layers of the leaf.  It pupates and hatches out leaving a tiny hole.  However the story has a twist or two.  A parasitic wasp is able to lay her eggs in the larva - yes the wasp larva eats the fly larva - delightful!  Continuing, birds like the Blue Tit, then eat the wasp larva.  Looking at information on web sites we need to take a closer look at these marks, as depending upon the mark left on the leaf, we should be able to tell if the larva of the fly or wasp has hatched or if the larva has been eaten.  And not forgetting this is a new species!

Holly Leaf Miner

Foxglove is often two weeks behind the surrounding area when it comes to flowering times.  The weather has been so cold, spring is very late.  Or are we just used to earlier springs?  Checking the April blog of 2017, there is a photo of a Marsh Marigold in flower, but the best I can do this April are some leaves.

Marsh Marigold leaves

In some of the hedgerows surrounding Foxglove Blackthorn is beginning to flower.  In Foxglove it is still tight in bud.

Blackthorn flower buds

And finally a Redpoll has been caught that is six years old.  These birds only weigh between 9 and 12 grams.  Yet another amazing fact from the bird ringing that takes place at Foxglove. 

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Friends of Foxglove

The Friends of Foxglove Covert is for those individuals, families and organisations who would like to support the reserve through an annual membership subscription. Friends receive a regular newsletter and invitations to attend our various activities and social events.

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Upcoming Events

Pumpkin Trail

Saturday 23rd October 2021 | 10.00am - 3.00pm

Come to the reserve half term 23rd - 31st October and enjoy the autumn colours on the red route (Easy Access Trail) and search for the pumpkin clues along the way. Test your knowledge of the creatures associated with Halloween by answering the fun quiz which is available from the visitor centre for only 50p.

No need to book, come and enjoy some fresh air with your family bubble. Don't forget your wellies and a pencil!

Wildlife Activity Day

Wednesday 27th October 2021 | 10:00am - 3:00pm

Come and celebrate British Wildlife on this family activity day as part of our Wonderful Wildlife Week. There will be lots of hands - on craft activities for all ages. Make bird feeders, mini bug hotels, seed bombs. Craft a hedgehog or spider or bee from different materials to take away too. This is a drop in session so booking is not required. Donations towards costs of materials would be appreciated on the day.


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Undergrowth Newsletter Winter 2020/21 Issue 54

Find out what has been going on at the reserve during the lockdown!

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