Weekly walk, 3rd February, 2016

Pond from the north

A friend’s email this week made me realise that hazel would be flowering, so I left the path to where our one hazel is – and indeed it too was in flower, with both the obvious yellow male catkins dangling down, but also the much smaller red female flowers, which might eventually become hazel nuts.  It’s a bit embarrassing, but until my friend’s email, I’d not registered the two different types of hazel flower.

No new fungi today as such, but time I thought to learn more about lichen – which are symbioses of fungi and algae.  I just hope my photos are good enough for the ispotnature.org experts to identify them.

There were also a couple of magpies, making a racket and some mallards – maybe the same as last week – who may have felt the same about me, flying off indignantly as I emerged from the woodland on the bank of the pond – so still no photo of them.  There was also some bird, high up I think, with a song I’m sure an expert could have recognised, but I couldn’t – and I never managed to spot it either.

Again the paths were muddy, and today I noticed paw prints.  I suspect they are of a dog – which should not, of course, be in the reserve.  But they might have been a fox, as far as I knew, although since coming back, I’ve looked up on line, and I don’t think so.  All the same, another week, when the paths are muddy, it might be worth looking out for more tracks.

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