Bioturbation

Wikipedia defines bioturbation as the reworking of soils and sediments by animals or plants. Here is a video of a system with and without soil fauna such as earthworms, mites and isopods over a 15 week period: this is what is happening to the fallen leaves all over the reserve.

Tardigrades

Tardigrades have been found everywhere in Earth’s biosphere, from the highest mountaintops to the deepest sea  and from tropical rainforests to the Antarctic. There are sure to be some, somewhere, in the reserve’s ponds, going quietly about their business.

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More about the otters in Lambrok Stream

Simon Tesler’s video of an otter hunting in the moat at Southwick Court is powerful evidence not only of Lambrok Stream’s biodiversity, but its importance as a wildlife corridor that runs from the River Biss right up through and beyond Southwick village.

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Kingfisher!

Mail from Cheryl Cronnie with pictures of a kingfisher:

Hi there, I’d just like to share with you the kingfisher I spotted today at Southwick Country Park by the pond. I was over the moon as I had never seen one before.

Lovely! Thank you, Cheryl.

Crane Flies

There are hundreds of species of crane fly in this country and almost all of them go by the name of daddy long legs. The differences between species can be microscopically small but we think this specimen photographed in the reserve is either a common European crane fly (Tipula paludosa) or a marsh crane fly, (T. oleracea).

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One for sorrow, two for joy…

There are several families of magpies in the reserve. This year’s crop are, as yet, short-tailed, loud- mouthed and clumsy, hanging out in gangs and still learning to fly properly. But, despite their dramatic black and white beauty, their reputation is poor.

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Eurasian collared dove

Collared doves (Streptopelia decaocto) bred in Britain for the first time in 1955, in Norfolk. Within 20 years they had colonised every county in the British Isles, and had even reached Shetland and the Outer Hebrides.

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It’s garden-tidy-up time.

Keep a look out for hibernating amphibians as you tidy up your garden ready for winter. Frogs, toads and newts will find sheltered places to hibernate in hedge bottoms, compost heaps, under stones and in log piles and are best not disturbed. Take particular care if you are planning to clear out a pond: frogs and newts will sometimes overwinter in the mud at the bottom.

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