Magical May - What has been seen at Brockholes?

Ged Gill

May is always a lovely month for wildlife. Whatever the weather, the circle of life moves forward and nests are built, breeding season continues, fledglings start to appear, and families explore their homes.

It has been wonderful to watch the new chicks begin to come out, from Long Tailed Tits, Wrens and Blue Tits to Lapwings, and see the Canada goslings and Grebe chicks on the lake being led by their parents, or even hitching a ride. A pair of Shelducks were seen on Number 1 Pit lake with 11 ducklings!

Garden Warbler

Jo Humphreys

The bluebell carpet began to wilt, leaving room for a whole host of other wildflowers including Cuckoo Flower, Yellow Rattle, Oxeye Daisy, Yellow Iris and so much more. Brockholes is a treat for all the senses at the moment, with beautiful sights, sounds and smells wherever you go.

We had a whole collection of Warblers spotted on site during the month, from the Sedge and Grasshopper, right up to the Garden and Cettiā€™s Warblers. Their song is truly wonderful and made for a wonderful event at the beginning of the month where we hosted a Dawn Chorus walk.

Orange Tip Butterfly

John Cobham

Not disheartened by a little rain, more butterflies started to emerge, with great sightings of Peacock Butterfly, Common Blue and Green Veined White, as well as the Orange Tip. The Damsel and Dragonflies have been out in force; Common Blue, Azure and Large Red damselflies have been spotted, and Broad Bodied Chaser Dragonfly, with more expected as the weather continues to improve.

Goldfinches are still hanging around, and a good number of Swifts were seen flying over Number 1 Pit. This was especially good news as since 1995 the British Swift population has declined by 38% and the species has been placed on the list of Birds of Conservation Concern as Amber, meaning it is in need of our help.

Whinchat

Jo Humphreys

A large brood of Blacktailed Godwits have been seen around Meadowlake and a wonderful Whinchat seen in various spots around the reserve. Whitethroats and Sandpipers have had their moments of glory, spotted by visitors enjoying afternoon tea in the newly refurbished Kestrel Kitchen.

Cheeky little bank voles and mice have been seen, scuttling around in the woodland. And a mole was spotted above ground, having a good look around, before zooming back into his home. Common Terns are fishing as they fly over the lakes and Redshanks are enjoying time on the islands.

Everywhere you look at Brockholes, there is more wildlife to be found. This is just a small insight to 250 acres of natural goodness. Who knows what we will find in June.

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