May 30, 2016

Cow Parsley and Baby birds

What a wonderful display of the first of the Umbelliferae, Cow Parsley, (my favourite wildflower) sometimes called Wild Chervil, Wild Beaked Parsley, Keck, or Queen Anne's lace,  we have complementing the snowline of Hawthorne and Blackthorn along the hedgerows and verges.  All this snowy white blossom lifts the spirit on the way to work.

It is sad that Wirral council felt it necessary to strim  all the wildflowers down in its prime on the verges of the main road out of  Prenton  towards  Arrowe Park particularly where very few pedestrians go. This was a beautiful vista as you came off the motorway.  Could they not have waited until the seeds had formed at least.  It seems pointless planting wildflower seeds in one area and then destroying  ones in their natural habitat, totally missing the point of biodiversity.

White and Pink Valerian is very prolific and healthy this year with its spires protruding from stonewalls and concrete cracks.  It seems to prefer places where it is not in competition with anything else.

Sedge Warbler
My friend and I took part in one of the many walks taking part throughout the Wirral during May.  This one was at the RSPB Bird Reserve at Burton Point.  Luckily the day was sunny and fresh so all the wildlife was busy with activity.  The highlight was hearing the rare  Cetti's  Warbler, no one ever sees this tiny little brown job. 

 All the incomers were nest building and the males were advertising their presence to prospective females, so we did get to see many birds I had never seen or heard before.   Burton Point is also a wonderful place for  discovering unusual coastal  wildflowers.

We were guided by a very informative  enthusiastic  volunteer who took us round the newly  extended walks around the reserve.  We only covered two thirds in the 2 hours it took for the walk.  It is just very sad that the reserve is not accessible by public transport.

Avocet - also  once very rare bird

 It is a delight to see and hear all the baby birds gathering together in the trees and shrubs.  Sadly our nest box of Blue Tits fledged too early and only lasted a day.  Much to our sadness and heartbreak of their parents who spent the whole of the next day looking for their young.

 I was not intending to show this photograph as it is so sad, but  their little short lives deserve celebrating after all the hard work of the parent birds.

Bluebell covered Iron Age Fort at Burton Point
 All the trees are now loosing their blossom to seed heads.  As a nature observer the more detail noticed the faster the season seems to flow as changes are constant from day to day.  It is very easy to miss the nuances of what is happening all around us, regardless of the human attention.