Wildlife Update at CONKERS
Last week saw the official start of summer and although we’ve had some torrential rain here recently, the signs of summers are definitely starting to show. The site is becoming much greener and colourful with more flowers and butterflies present.The goslings are getting ever bigger and have begun to get their proper plumage and colouring, the moorhens are still producing chicks and dragonflies can be seen around the edge of the ponds.
A brilliant spot by one of the rangers last week was this Hawk-moth. Found when doing our morning safety checks it was drying itself off after the rains had stopped. After about 10 minutes it flew off, only to be attacked straight away by a hungry robin. Luckily, due to the size of Hawk-moths, it successfully got away and flew off the safety! Lots of large dragonflies and smaller damselflies have also been spotted near the ponds on both Discovery and Waterside sites. Butterflies are also much more common appearances on the sunny days browsing the flowers and enjoying the good weather.
Orchids, Irises, and Ox-eye daisies are all blooming and the bees and butterflies are starting to be spotted around the flowers. The Orchids we can see on site are the Common Spotted Orchid and you can see the spotted leaves in the bottom of the second photo. These can be seen in the reeds near the train station, at the back of the site near the bird hide and even in the car park which is where the first photo was taken. Yellow flag irises are also flowering on the edges of the ponds and our wildflower garden is full of grasses and Ox-eye daisies as well as other wildflowers. These are the perfect homes for minibeasts such as shield bugs, damselflies, and bees.
Some other exciting news is that the Gruffalo has come to Conkers!!! Find characters from the book in their homes in the Deep Dark Wood, located to the right of the Fairy Labyrinth. We are running a new education programme including a visit to see the Gruffalo but whenever you’re on site, give him a visit!!