Victor's Wildlife Report - September 2008

Despite the human concern over the algae, the birdlife has been unaffected. One new visitor to the lake, seen on 19th July, was a young Kingfisher. It was most probably a fledgling forced out of parent's territory now that it is able to fend for itself. This truly was a beautiful little bird, and one I have never seen in the park before. Unfortunately it decided to move on, and did not make Platt Fields its home - even so, it was a delight to see, if only for a short time.

Swifts and swallows have also been seen hunting insects above the lake over the last few weeks, with as many as 40 Swallows seen during the early evenings of June & July. The Ring-necked Parakeets are also still visiting the park, and they can generally be heard before they are seen, flying high above the trees around the ecogarden area.

Our Herons, for the second year in a row, have bred in the park and this time raised two chicks to adulthood. These large birds have now left the nest but can still sometimes be seen amongst the trees around the island.

A surprise visitor to the lake was a Black-Necked Grebe, which was first seen on the lake on 12th July. It only stayed few a few days - just long enough to cause bands of 'twitchers' (bird watchers) to descend on the park hoping to catch a glimpse of this rare species.

Black Headed Gulls have also returned to the waters of the lake once more, almost 6 weeks before they normally appear. Is this a sign of global warming - or is it just the proof of what a bad Summer we have had this year?

If you would like to help keep a record of the birdlife in the park (or are a keen photographer) then the Friends of Platt Fields is thinking of setting up a Bird Watchers Group. If you are interested then please contact Victor Blunden on .

Victor Blunden.
Wildlife Reporter.