Sunday, 12 April 2015

Grimsbury Reservoir and Tadmarton Heath: spring full on

Suddenly Grimsbury Reservoir is full of birds - migrating waders,  passing swallows and sand martins; grey wagtails courting.  It won't last so we need to enjoy these next few weeks of spring migration - the profusion of flowers and courtship/nesting of birds.  A great time to be out and about.

The male grey wagtail in breeding plumage with lemon yellow throat and under tail is a particular favourite of mine. 

male grey wagtail (female nearby, out of shot)

one of a pair of little ringed plovers
Crops are growing fast and our landscape will soon be a patchwork of bright yellow (oilseed rape), deep green (winter wheat) and paler green (winter and spring barley), with the odd bare field - a late sown crop (likely maize) or something a nature reserve.  I mention this, as the Banbury Ornithological Society nature reserve at Tadmarton Heath now displays a strip of brown earth ready to receive the seeds of a wild bird crop - hopefully providing a good food supply for next winter's hungry finches and buntings.  A flock of thirty linnets are already hanging around the freshly cultivated ground.
Tadmarton Heath wild bird strip
primroses by the stream
As you enter Tadmarton Heath there is a small unspoilt stream that flows through the adjoining woodland.   A patch of primroses are a perfect adornment to the stream: nature does this so much better than landscape gardeners (myself included)!

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