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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Kestrel again

Debbie Cronnie has sent pictures of the young kestrel family that is learning to hunt in our fields at the reserve.
Thank you Debbie.

Header image by Clive Knight

Wildlife watching requires patience

by Simon Knight

One of the special features about the park – or any wild place – is that if you go there at the correct time and have the patience to stay still, be quiet and just really look and listen, you will find that there is life all around you.

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Bird table ID

The header picture is a male chaffinch (CC0).


Bullfinches are regular visitors to the park. Despite the male’s glorious colouring, they are quiet, retiring types, rarely seen; this picture was taken early one Saturday morning when the park was pretty much empty of visitors.

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There is a pair of spotted flycatchers hunting from the hollow oak tree in the corner of the little triangular field between Simpsons and Fiveways. Keep an eye out for them; they are an increasingly rare sight.

Spotted flycatchers are on the RSPB’s Red List of Birds of Conservation Concern

Red kites again

Message from Ian, Sunday April 18th:

A Red Kite appeared over Sleepers Field and settled briefly on top of the Oak in the hedge between Sleepers and Cornfield before continuing towards Lambrok Meadow. I spoke with a nearby walker who said it joined up with another over Kestrel Field; we seem to have a pair that have included the park in their territory!

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The Cycle of Life Continues!

by Simon Knight

After my amazing weasel encounter, which showed the daily fight for survival that happens within the park, and to which many people are oblivious; I was fortunate to witness the opposite of the weasel encounter – this time life being created. 

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