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Thursday, 6 February 2014

January 2014

I don’t expect to see  much at all this time of year, certainly not any but road killed animals.  But on the same day, the 9th of January, I saw a Stoat and a Squirrel, separately.  My walk on the Aqueduct in late December produced another two Squirrels.

Pintailed Duck - The Weir
The Goosander is still at the Weir and has been joined by a Pintailed Duck.
However, there is also a large number of Goosander of both sexes on Lower Tamar Lake.

I have been out an about seeing lots of birds whilst doing my regular surveys.  Highlights are - Peregrines on the Aqueduct and at Upper Tamar Lake, and large flocks yesterday, 19th January of Lapwing and Golden Plover there.
I walked the Canal last week and saw two separate sightings of Kingfishers at the locks east of Rodd’s Bridge and another near the Bird Hide.

Early in January I found an old nest in the hedge near Stanbury Cross which contained 2 old eggs, one broken but the other whole which appear to be Yellowhammer.  I have photographed them, but can’t keep them as I would be breaking the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.
There seem to be lots of Bullfinches about – has anyone else noticed?

The only invertebrates seen are 7-spot ladybirds -  one on the Yellowhammer nest, and another today. I had to take down an Ash tree a couple of years ago which left me with half a metre diameter trunk sections which I could not easily chop up.  I have them strategically placed in the garden to provide under log habitats.  One has become the home of the invasive Australian flatworm Australoplana sanguinea.  I had four of them under their log in my garden yesterday.  The sighting of the month must go to a Brimstone Butterfly seen near Burdon Nature Reserve on the Bude Aqueduct in December.

Winter Heliotrope - Morwenstow
There are lots of Winter Heliotrope in flower smelling of vanilla and marzipan.  Snowdrops are out and the occasional Primrose

[transcript of a report given to Cornwall Wildlife Trust Tamar Group on 20 January 2014]

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