Category Archives: wildlife

Radley Lakes – May 2022

The pile of bricks left after the demolition of the house Sandles has been flattened. A new area for parking cars is being made for visitors during May. The car park will include an information board and, in time, be screened by a hedge.

Yellow flags brighten the bank near the road as I set off around Thrupp Lake.

Black-headed gulls nest on some small islands, and I saw them swooping and catching some of the many insects. They are opportunist feeders. Some squabbled and attacked each other for places on the islands. I only saw the one swan on Thrupp Lake.

This duck had a slipstream containing eight ducklings, keeping very close wherever the duck went.

On one of the smaller lakes nearby were baby coots. A cuckoo could also be heard around the filled-in lake near the railway.

Back round to Thrupp Lake, and the sun was going down.

These pictures were taken on Sunday evening.

May Day

This May Day morning was quite overcast, and there was some rain. April did not produce the expected April Showers.

Wagtails are often seen with insects in their beaks near Abingdon Weir.

There were also a group of thrushes near the lock – a family group with juveniles.

The chestnut branch that fell off the large tree in Cosener’s House is blossoming even though it has no roots.

A lady was selling handmade bags from near her boat. She said there was a good footfall yesterday, and she stayed open after 6 pm. Today was cooler, with fewer people, and quite cold for sitting out.

Radley Lakes – April 2022

The pink had gone from the sky and the sun was a half-circle as I walked up to Thrupp Lake this morning.

The sun cast a reflection on the water. Birds mounted from a tree root island and then settled back down.

Swans and geese came over to check whether I was the sort of human that brought them food and then decided I was a dead loss and drifted off again chewing water weeds instead.

I walked round to the other side of the lake; the camera started showing Err-20 and so I took the battery out for a few seconds to fix the problem. Two black-headed gulls were socialising on a fence and flew away as I approached. A cormorant or gannet or something dartlike flew over the lake but the camera would not focus and it joined other large dark birds in a feathery tree by the far bank.

Two Canada geese drifted over towards the reeds.

Then around by the little beach, by the main entrance, I started to see quite a few tufted ducks and a couple of grebes.

On the road by Thrupp Lake, I saw a man putting together a Jodrell Bank style camera with a huge tripod. I then walked around by the more out of the way lakes. There were three Muntjac deer on the far bank. As I left I saw the man with the large camera. He probably got much clearer images, if he even bothered with Muntjac – could have been after something far more exotic.

Goslings on the cycle path

Malvin sent me this picture of a group of goslings on the cycle path beside the Mill Stream through the Abbey Meadows.

It is always a good idea to cycle slowly at that part on the path. There are pedestrians, and wildlife. In the new Highway Code, the “Hierarchy of Road Users” ranks road users in order of those who are most at risk in the event of an accident. It does not mention wildlife.

I was amazed last weekend to hear the loud sounds of fireworks during the birds breeding season. I have never investigated whether firework displays need to get a license.