Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Tuesday 5th.May 2009

A grey , dour morning gave me the opportunity to catch up my photos of the last week or so , as volunteering was cancelled due to lack of suitable work . I got on with the job in hand , but was distracted by two Squirrels on the garage roof . It was apparent that one was adult and the other a juvenile , probably one of this year's young , and probably from the reactions of both , it's first sorti into the big wide world . I know they had a nest in the roof of the garage two doors away . They were gone past the back bedroon window before I could grab the camera , but managed a shot from the front , before they carefully made their way up the road from car to car , with the youngster exploring all it found . The youngster is the one on top , always clinging to the parent whenever out in the open . No Warren , it isn't another 'frenzy of sexual activity' shot .
After lunch , things brightened up and I was tempted to get out for a walk . I started on the Common . There were good numbers of Brimstone on the wing and a single Peacock , resting on a stump . It looks like it will be another good year for Holly berries , as the female trees are full of flower , now they just need to be pollinated . The only other wildlife found was when I was almost back to the car and preparing to cross the road to the car park , I heard movement in the vegetation to my left , then saw a large form crashing through it , towards the road . I got to the road and crossed over and walked the other verge to the area opposite where I heard the noise stop . I got a fleeting shot of a male and female Roe Deer , but by the time I got the camera on them , the female had moved , leaving the male giving me the evil eye . He had a good set of antlers , not showing well in this distant shot . Have done really well for Roe Deer recently . When you think this spot is only 2/3 miles out of Bromley and 12/13 from Central London , it's not bad .
From the Common , I headed to Keston Ponds , but first had a walk down to Keston Bog , to see if any Damselfies had emerged . This was an area that Charles Darwin frequented , whist working on his 'Origin of Species' . LB.Bromley manage the bog , and have removed overhanging trees , in an attempt to return it to it's original state . It must be about the only lowland bog within the Greater London area , and supports some rare mosses , Bog Asphodel and used to support Sundews , which Darwin studied here . By opening it up and with less leaf litter , the hope is that Sundew seeds in the seed bank , will recolonize the area . The only plant that was in flower on the bog was Tormentil-Potentilla fruticosa , which only grows in acidic soil .
On a small pond that feeds into the bog , I found a male Mandarin duck , looking as if he was standing sentry on a log at the far end . When he saw me , he gave a series of whistles , and I wondered if he was guarding his female , that could be nesting in the Ivy clad Oak with a limb that conveniently srtetched out over the water , to give a diving board for the young when they hatch out . That's him on the log , back left of the pond , and the limb top right .
When I got to the three main ponds , the top one was very quiet , the middle one reunited me with an old friend from the Autumn , the Ringed Teal is showing again . The lowest pond had most interest , with a pair of Tufted Ducks , I don't think I've recorded them here before ,
A Canada Goose on a nest on the small island ,
and when I checked out the Coot's nest , I found it occupied by a Terrapin , no doubt a left over from the Ninga Turtle series .
Before getting back into the car , I noticed that the stand of Broad-leaved Helleborine that show here every year , are already showing well , even though the bible says that they will not flower until early July , at the earliest , that's if they survive the Rabbits and the Deer .


Warren Baker said...

Did that terrapin predate the coot eggs greenie ?

Most upset about the lack of frenzied sexual activity in your posts recently, and why dont I get Tufted duck on my lake!

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Could have done as the two adult Coots were on the pond , but no sign of youngsters .

Ken Browne. said...

Hi Greenie.
What a great spot being to close to London.
I think what would make Warren's day would be a sexual frenzy of Tufted Duck's on his patch.

Phil and Mandy said...

A lovely selection of photos greenie.