We are grateful to John O’Boyle, who is again leading a series of nature walks for 2G3S this summer. John is a great guide – informative and very happy to answer questions and follow the interests of the group. His quiet enthusiasm for the natural world is infectious.
We started with a walk round Dernford Reservoir on Saturday 26 June. There were nine of us, plus dog!
We were treated to the distinctive call of a cuckoo and the uplifting song of larks as they ascended from the grassland around the lake. Terns were busy squabbling on the island where they seem to be nesting and showing off with their acrobatic flight and vertical dives into the water. A Great Crested Grebe was seen diving down into the water and then passing small fish to her two chicks with their distinctive striped heads.
Dazzling blue damselflies hovered above the water and a pair of large Emperor Dragonflies zigzagged near the bank. There were several Meadow Brown butterflies fluttering about and small chafer bugs sunning themselves on the vegetation.
June is the month for grasses to flower and we contrasted the distinctive shapes of several species. There were abundant meadow plants of many colours ranging from white to purple.
It will be interesting to see how the meadow develops over the year – will a sensitive grass cut and collect regime maintain the diversity of the ground flora or will the land be left to scrub over? We are fortunate to have on our doorstep such a special area of natural abundance.
24 July at Stapleford Chalk Pit – further details here
21 August in Little Shelford
September in Sawston