Monday, 12 December 2011

Surveys 3 - Birds & Bees and the Rest

What else do we record? Well just about anything connected with wildlife / nature, if it moves we record it, if it doesn’t move we record it!
A day at Gibside is not complete without a sighting of a Red Kite. We can usually manage to see at least one Red Kite on most visits to Gibside. Red Kites have been reintroduced into the Derwent Valley since 2004.

Is it a bird? The workers stop to watch a Red Kite.
Red Kite - silouette
Little Grebes and Coots can often be seen on The Octagon Pond.

Little Grebe
Coot on nest - Octagon Pond
We record bee species. As Gibside has an abundance of wild and cultivated flowers it is very bee friendly. We have recorded the following bee species on the estate: honeybee, white-tailed, buff-tailed, red-tailed and garden bumble bees as well as common carder bee. We don’t have many photographs as they tend not to stay still for very long!
Common Carder Bee on Bugle Flower

Red-tailed Bumblebee

Some bee species build underground nests.
The two photographs below show the individual cells of an underground bumblebee nest

Butterflies are a common sight when we are surveying wild flowers.


Red Admiral

Speckled Wood

Small Tortoiseshell

Small White

Five-spot Burnet Moth

During pond surveys we often see and record amphibians, in particular frogs, toads and newts.

Common Frog

Toads mating
Toads mating

We also record dragonflies and damselflies.
Dragonfly which had been caught in our net.
 It was released unharmed a few seconds later.

Large Red Damselfly

Common Blue Damselfly
And we haven't even mentioned mammals yet! Unfortunately we don't have any photographs of mammals but Gibside has several species of bat, foxes, roe deer, grey squirrels,badgers, voles etc.

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