To start this cold and crisp January, an inquisitive nuthatch was seen foraging amongst the trees in Boilton Wood. With its resplendent blue and grey feathers, it was quite a treat to see this curious little creature traversing Brockholes substantial woodland. A plenitude of coal tits have also once again been witnessed weaving in and amongst our bird tables. Despite their prevalence at Brockholes, this does little to diminish the delight of viewing one of these peculiar little birds whistling through the air.
What wonderful wildlife was seen in January?
Rather wonderfully the majestic Kingfisher has also once more been spotted gliding across meadow lake. This small brightly coloured bird offers some of the most superb visual demonstrations, whilst on the lookout for fish. Upon spotting its chosen prey, the kingfisher dives down into the water at high velocity in breath-taking fashion. Additionally, providing another much needed flash of colour in what has been despondently damp weather is the magnificent goldcrest. The goldcrest with their trademark yellow stripe, have been spotted fluttering all around the reserve, whilst on the hunt for insects and other small creatures.
Remaining with our feathered friends for a moment longer, January marked the moment when the sublime bittern returned to Brockholes Nature Reserve. This rare bird is best observed rustling amongst the reeds, whilst hunting for fish and small amphibians. Again in terms of rarity the much beloved smew has been seen once again in and around the reserve, to the delight of many of our visitors. Finally, to top off a glorious month of bird spotting, one of the regions favourite and rarest wading birds, the lapwing has been sighted bobbing amongst the Brockholes wetlands.
In spite of the cold and damp weather, the reserve is still alive with an abundance of plant life. One particularly spectacular find was the marvellously bright scarlet elf cap. Amongst the decaying branches and leaves which are all too common in the winter months, lies the vividly crimson red scarlet elf cap. Additionally, budding catkin also provided a much needed splash of colour with their blush pink and yellow complexion.
All of these marvellous January sightings demonstrate that no matter the time of year, Brockholes is always alive with various wonderful things to see.