In warm sunshine a dozen residents completed the walk around Dernford Reservoir, just south of Stapleford, in late September. The reservoir area was opened for public access last year following amelioration of the former gravel quarry.
The group were introduced to several late flowering plants including bright yellow Toadflax and purple Upright Vetch. A large dragonfly was seen skimming over the water. There was a group of more than 50 gulls on the water, including Black-backed gulls. We watched a Grebe taking a series of dives to catch small fish and a Cormorant flew low over the reservoir. One of the group spotted a Common Sandpiper on the shore and we shared binoculars to see it bobbing about on the shoreline. A group of dogs splashing in the water drove the wary birds to the other side of the reservoir, the owners ignoring the fencing and deep water warning signs.
The reservoir is becoming a more popular walking venue and provides a useful local wildlife asset. It will be interesting to observe how it develops over the next few years. Note the reservoir is in Sawston Parish, one of the villages that the 2G3S group represents (Shelfords, Stapleford and Sawston).