Nature notes with Reserve Manager Paul Stevens:
Sunny weather with a bit of rain has spurred on the spring wild flowers. Yellow flag iris starting to flower, visible from Ramsar hide and Lapwing hide. Along the Tranquil Trail path to the Lapwing hide red campion, ragged robin and herb-robert are all in flower. These ‘pinks’ are visible on other pathways too.
Ramsar hide: Three lapwing chicks have hatched from nest opposite the hide, the family remains in that area, sometimes visible on the bare spot of land with low vegetation. Black headed gulls are nestings. On the water : male shoveler, male tufted duck – females likely on nests nearby.
Sightings along the Tranquil Trail: reed warbler, goldfinch, buzzard on Offham Hangar, red mason bees and ruby-tailed wasps on the bug hotel at The Holt.
On Wetlands Discovery: male pochards, blue tailed damselfly, hairy dragonfly
Lapwing hide: warning whinny from lapwing to chicks, coot clicking warning to chicks, female lapwing with one chick in area where nest was situated on small rise to left of hide, sedge warbler flies past.
Sand martin hide: approach sedge warbler singing, dunnock singing. From hide black-headed gulls nesting, hairy-footed flower bees nesting in artificial nest bank
Scrape hide: grey heron, a kingfisher perching in central willow then off to reedbed to the left, swallows over the water likely the ones trying to nesting at Reedbed hide
Long path: Moorhen with two chicks in the ditch, female partridge with 5 young chicks near access gate to Arun Rverlife, linnets in the scrub pair possibly nesting.
Wetland Secrets Plant house: red mason bees in roof thatch
Reedbed boardwalk: long-tailed tit nest covered in lichen now emnpty after chicks fledged, mandarin duck perched in tree near owl barrel (nesting), coots with young.
Arun Riverlife lagoon: male lapwing displaying, oystercatcher pair on nest (3 eggs?)on the gravel island opposite café windows, black-headed gull nests on gravel island.