Our bat survey last week highlighted what a great feeding area the Arun Riverlife lagoon is. With a low count of bats and species over most of the site, Arun Riverlife was where the party was! Daubentons, peak count of 12 and all three species of pipistrelle (Nathusius, Common and soprano) were there. Particularly interesting was the Nathusius, was it an early migrant (heading to Europe where they hibernate) or had they bred locally?
The two barn owl chicks could also be heard ‘snoring’ (the call they make for most of the night to let the parents know they are hungry) from the nest box whilst we were bat surveying.
Early migrating birds are now increasing including garden, reed, sedge, willow warbler, chiffchaff, blackcap, swallow, house, sand martin, green and common sandpiper. Watch out for pied flycatcher as well that have been sited throughout the south and locally in recent days.
Kingfishers are showing well with max of three at any one time probably being fledged young birds still waiting for their parents to feed them.
Bullfinch families being seen around the reserve as well as linnets. Long tailed tit seem to be flocking together with small parties of these birds moving through the hedgerows and scrub.
Duck numbers remain low with ones and twos of most species except gadwall and mallard. This is surprising given the lack of water at other sites with Arundel remaining wet throughout the southern half of the reserve, however many will be moulting and not moving around as much.
Brown and migrant hawker dragonflies are showing well and with this week’s dragonfly survey to carry out who knows which species will be seen!
Butterflies seem to be flourishing in the continued warm weather with Large white being the most abundant last week with 22 seen on the survey. Common blue seem to have a good year with a count of 6. Meadow brown seem to be having an extended season because of the warm conditions.