What you might see
Summer is the peak time for purple heather with the added bonus of the many insects. Watch out for Silver- studded Blue butterflies; Heath Sand Wasps in the bare sand and by the many wet areas dragonflies such as Black Darter and the large Golden-Ringed. Holes the size of your finger, surrounded by piles of sand, are made by the Minotaur Beetle. The Hobby hunts over the heath for dragonflies and later in the year Swallows and martins on migration, which it feeds to it young in flight. Listen out for its call that to some sounds like ‘kill, kill, kill’. And don’t forget the Nightjars.
As the days shorten, the thousands of spiders become more apparent with dewdrops settling on their webs creating beautiful miniature chandeliers. On sunny days the beautiful descending song of the Woodlark can still be heard in winter as they are the first birds to set up territories in early spring. Flocks of Siskin, Linnet and Lesser Redpoll gather.
Spring is best for bird song including the Tree Pipit that has a spiral display flight from the tops of Birch. The now uncommon Willow Warblers can frequently be heard as can Stonechats with their distinctive alarm call.
In this section
15 June 2022
Now summer is here it is a good time to brush up on your knowledge of ticks, where they live and what sensible precautions you can take.
10 March 2021
As the country begins to look forward to a time when we emerge from lockdown, we would like to draw your attention to ongoing issues we are aware of affecting some our nature reserves.
29 September 2020
As part of the Heathland Sculpture Trail that connects the heathlands within the South Downs National Park, a sculpture dedicated to the specialist heathland dragonflies has been erected at Stedham Common.
05 September 2020
Last week Glenn Norris spent 15 minutes watching one of the coolest insects of the year the Bee Wolf.