Some lovely spring sunshine has encouraged butterflies to emerge. My first Holly Blue of the year was seen on Ivy today. A Lesser Whitethroat was in the hedge on Stony Bank on 19th and 2 Common Sandpipers were on the dam. On the same date a single Noctule bat was feeding near to the church. Highlight today were two Bar-tailed Godwits, which flew over heading north. There was also a single Wheatear in the field at the top end and 7 Yellowhammers on the ploughed field.
On Wednesday two rafts were launched at the Markfield inflow end of the reservoir. They are designed to attract Common Terns to hopefully nest and breed. The rafts have been funded and built by members of Leicestershire and Rutland Ornithological Society. LROS and any terns that use the rafts in the future, would like to thank Ifor Jones of Thornton Trout Fishery and Severn Trent for their support in completing this project.
There are eight similar rafts at Watermead CP, where last year 28 young terns were successfully raised. The rafts have Perspex sides, which are a deterrent to predators such as Mink. The rafts are covered in gravel, on which the terns lay their eggs. There are also ridge tiles, under which young terns can seek shelter.