It’s been a month since my last entry here which is not so good considering this is the busiest time of year for nature. The trouble is I’ve been so busy out enjoying it I havn’t had much time to blog about it! There’s various nature news from around the Bournemouth area that I wanted to discuss so that’s what this post is all about.
Let me start with some admin to tell you this blog now has a Twitter account. You can follow @dangoeswild1 for all the new blog posts, various photos of wildlife that I take whilst out and about and wildlife news and things of interest from other places.
Time to check in on the peregrine falcons I’ve been following in Bournemouth. Well, here’s a screenshot of the webcam as I write this post:
It’s far from clear but that bird was actually one of the chicks. A team went up into the bell tower and ringed the chicks, identifying them as two males and one female. The chicks now look pretty much adult birds, albeit with a hint of fluff in places.The birds have now fledged and will no doubt be seen around the clock tower in the near future. They are still around the nest so for now you can still watch them on the webcam.
Meanwhile, the Brownsea Island Lagoon webcam is now focused on a colony of breeding sandwich terns.
For some context on this, here’s a snippet from the webcam page:
Currently viewable on the webcam above is the breeding colony of Sandwich Tern on the Brownsea Island Lagoon. The Terns usually arrive back at the end of April/beginning of May and start prospecting the small man-made islands straight away to look for the perfect nesting area. Over the years the number of pairs has varied but on average there are usually 210+ pairs of Sandwich Terns and 100+ pairs of Common Tern.
Unfortunately predation is a common issue with the Tern colonies, so protective fences have to be erected to limit the number of eggs and chicks being taken. Anything from Crows, Great Black-backed Gulls, Herons and even wandering Sika Deer could pose a threat, so although the fencing can make the sight of these elegant birds a little un-natural, it’s vital for their ongoing breeding success.
Something of local interest which I never got around to talking about at the time was a pod of dolphins that were spotted fishing at Boscombe Surf Reef. As far as I can gather dolphins (common dolphins I assume) are spotted in the area around once a year so it a fairly unusual occurrence. To see a video of the dolphins and read a little more about them click here.
This week there has been another wildlife spectacle in the sea at Boscombe, although i suspect one that will interest less people. The sea started looking really murky and locals immediately started to blame beach replenishment work. Whilst that might have something to with it, the murkiness is caused by harmless phytoplankton. Apparently there has been a bloom of algae along the Dorset coast this year. [Source]
And one final Bournemouth-based nature story to finish. The A338 Spur Road has basically been rebuilt over the last six months or so, much to the dismay of many commuters (including myself). The road now has a concrete barrier rather than a steel one, something which is becoming the new norm. And here’s the wildlife bit, from the A338 Roadworks Blog:
You’ll also see holes at frequent intervals along the bottom of the barrier – there are 18x 200mm holes for otters and 88x 75mm holes for reptiles. It may seem crazy to you but if wildlife could cross the road before we have to make sure they can still cross it now.
I was really pleased to see the thought that has gone into this and that care was taken to protect the habitat. The spur road runs straight through the middle of a heathland which really needs protecting.
That’s all for today but I’ve got lots to come including recent wildlife sightings, my results for this year’s garden bioblitz and a look at which to vote on the EU referendum from the natural world side of things.