ChatPosted by liz Mon, February 25, 2013 16:31:15
Gulls - by Angela Hornsby.
Each morning, when I open my blinds to look out of the window, I see a mass of GULLS, flying in flocks, some mornings, there are loads. My dog sits watching them for a good 10 mins, going up and down, round and round, its around 7.15am ish most mornings.
I must say, they really look so graceful, but as I watched them, I just wondered,
where do they go at night???
Where do they roost?????
ChatPosted by liz Mon, November 12, 2012 14:56:13
Each year I wait for my little night time friends to wake up, it’s about April time or when the weather permits them to appear. It’s got to be just the right conditions, not cold or too windy, and of course, when the insects are flying.
They didn’t let me down this year, I was worried, as for the past two years I have not seen that many around because of white nose (fungus) or the very cold conditions when we lose a lot of our little bats.
Well let me just say May 15th, I was so so happy when I sat looking out of my window which looks out over Colwick Woods on Greenwood Road, it was dusk and THERE they were!! They were putting on a lovely show just for me, it was great, they fly so gracefully and so FAST. This went on for about 30 mins, it was so wonderful to see them again. I did notice there were lots of moths and other insects flying too – ha ha, not their day!! This was only 5ft away from my window, who’s the lucky one?!! They look the size of blackbirds when flying but they are only a quarter of their size if not smaller.
As the nights get lighter later, they still keep appearing, sometimes there are only a few and other times there are lots, I use my bat detector when I can’t see them as some of the bats fly higher and I can’t see them but with the detector, I can hear them.
Midsummer was the best time, it was just like they had all told their buddies to come to show off outside my window with their flying skills, who needs a tv?!! I really am so lucky, but they are feeding not just showing off.
I must say, I do smile when I see people walking on the woods at dusk, they have no idea of all the things that are flying or going about their duty, ie, looking for their dinner.
There has been 3 types of bats in the Colwick Woods area, Noctule, which fly higher early evening and has a low call, then two of the Pipistrelles, the Common, which has a medium call and the Soprano, which, you’ve guessed, has a very high pitched call, all of these calls we CAN NOT hear, you need a bat detector. It’s really worth going on a bat walk where they have these things. Keep an eye out on the website for when there are going to be some walks.
Well, it’s got to the end of their season again (Autumn-Winter). Our lovely little friends are getting ready for bed, they have had to eat each day around 3,000 midges, mosquitoes and other flies in a day to keep fit and look after their babies for next year. Glad we can just go to the shop!!
SO, when you walk in the woods at dusk, just look up...Is it birds or...bats? AND NO, they do not go in your hair, why would they?????
I’m looking forward to next season...when they reappear.
Written by Angela Hornsby
ChatPosted by liz Sun, August 12, 2012 11:54:43
If you're batty about bats like I am, then you will know we have them flying around our woods from dusk to dawn -
if not then read this........
We (f.o.c.w group) went to a workshop with Wildlife in the City on Thurs 9th July 7-30pm -11pm, what a GREAT night it was, no wind, warm, and lots of insects about ( we got eaten alive but that’s another story) we had a good talk by a man who knows everything there is to know about bats then we had a walk around Colwick woods, we all had bat detectors, I, myself, have been detecting bats from my lounge window, which looks onto Colwick wood from Greenwood Rd for 4yrs now and I still get excited when they display around my building.
Well we walked around the woods and to my surprise, the batman - (sorry I can’t remember his name) - told us to change frequency, to upper and lower to what I normally use and I was pleased to find there were two more types of bats in the woods.
I normally listen to the common Pipistrelle, but now I’m able to listen for Noctule and the Soprano Pipistrelle .
When I got back home I was buzzing,
A great night was had by all, who would have thought such little bats would make an impact on so many people.
Written by Angela Hornsby.
ChatPosted by liz Sat, August 11, 2012 00:14:49
Well, the weather on the evening of the bat event was lovely. It was a fine night with no wind, a lovely night for a stroll in the woods in the dark!! Just the weather for bats to be out, trouble was they were out in a different place to where we were!! Ha ha!!
There were some people from Wildlife in the City and a bat surveyor who brought some bat detectors for us to borrow so that we could hear the bats calling.
We started off at the pavilion where the bat surveyor gave a talk and let us listen to a recording of the noises each of the bats we were likely to hear would make. He explained that the bats call at different frequencies and told us what to set the bat detectors to, to be able to hear them. We also got a really nice brochure telling us all about the different species of bats.
Bats locate their insect prey and objects in their environment by the pattern of returning echoes from their high frequency ultrasonic calls called echolocation.
At around 9pm, we set off into the woods to see what we could find. We started off at the pond as there are a lot of insects there so we thought we might be lucky but nothing was recorded, we were perhaps a bit too early as it was still light. We then went off towards Angela’s hairdressers because she sees them a lot from her window. We stood under the trees just the other side of her garden and struck lucky, we heard and saw a Soprano Pipistrelle bat flitting around the tree. Angela said that if we stayed a bit longer, we would see a lot more but Richard said that he had often seen them following the line of the road, going towards the top end of the football pitches, so we moved off and stood for a while by the gate near the playground but again, none turned up unfortunately. We moved off again and followed the line of trees heading in the direction of Colwick Park, we thought there might be some following the canopy of trees, catching the insects that were hanging around there, we caught sound of a few Common Pipistrelles but couldn’t see them. We then turned towards the other side of the park to follow the line of trees there back towards Angela’s and stood under the trees there again, where again, we heard a few Soprano Pipistrelles. On the way back to the pavilion, we turned the frequency of the bat detectors down and heard the call of a Noctule bat but we couldn’t see it, it passed so fast and disappeared into the tree canopy.
It was quite disappointing that we couldn’t find many bats that night but we all enjoyed the strolling around the park on such a lovely evening. What wasn’t so nice was waking up the next morning to find that the insects had had a field day biting us!! I’m covered in itchy bites and big lumps!!
Written by Liz
ChatPosted by liz Mon, March 19, 2012 19:20:52
Sunday 11th Feb 2012 – Silly little Bird!! - by Angela Hornsby
I was looking out of my kitchen window, watching all the little birds, wrens, robins, and bluetits, they were all darting about and singing their little hearts out.
I saw this bluetit going mad where I have a mirror on my fence behind a small shrub. He was going backwards and forwards around it for ages, shouting his head off.
The next day, early in the morning, I was washing my pots and I saw him again, he was there shouting at it again for about three quarters of an hour. Then it clicked.......he must be fighting his own image, thinking it was an intruder on ‘his’ patch!!
I must admit, it was funny until I felt sorry for him, I thought he’s using all his energy fighting himself instead of looking for a mate, so I covered the mirror up.
Yes, it worked, he’s a lot happier now that the ‘other’ male, his rival, has disappeared!!
ChatPosted by liz Tue, February 07, 2012 23:12:41
What a funny Winter - by Angela Hornsby
On walking my dog around Bakersfield, Carlton in the cold and rain in November and December 2011, I just could not believe my eyes, snowdrops, broom, buddleia (butterfly bush), lots of roses, nemesia, nasturtiums and even delphiniums were in full bloom and just outside my home, well, my yucca has got a 5ft flower and even into 2012, it is still in flower.
What is going on?
None of these brave plants should be out at this time. In all my time as a gardener, I have never seen this. After losing a lot of my plants to the Winter of 2010 and looking at all these plants popping up in flower now, I am lost for words.
Bats – We think that they have moved on to another roost with the bad weather of 2010 but they are still about.
Foxes – I always hear the many foxes shouting to each other Dec-Jan when it is time for them to mate, but this year, I have not heard one. We know they have mange, I just hope some of them around Colwick Woods will make it and not die. Myself, I have not seen any since around Nov/Dec last year but some locals have said they have still seen them around their gardens, let’s keep our fingers crossed they survive.
Dog Poo – Thanking all of you for keeping the woods from over flowing with dog poo, but I must say there are some new people that still do not know that dog poo is VERY damaging to children’s eye sight. I wonder if when they let their dog poo in their own garden, DO THEY LEAVE IT THERE ????? or, as if by magic, does a fairy come and take it away? If everyone picked up their own dog’s poo, the woods would be a much nicer walking place for everyone and it wouldn’t be left to the volunteers of Friends of Colwick Woods to have to go round and do it.
Thank you all for your wonderful support - Angela