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April 2017

posted 2 May 2017, 05:32 by Jane Arnold   [ updated 2 May 2017, 07:58 ]
grasshopper warbler

April has been a very busy month and excitingly, we have a grasshopper warbler on the Green at the moment! I have never heard/seen one before, so I am thrilled that one has been around for the last 10 days. It maybe on migration or more excitingly maybe trying to breed on the Green. This bird is much easier heard than seen, as it has a very distinctive call, which sounds, yes, you have guessed it, like a grasshopper! You can hear the call by clicking on the widget below, which may take a few seconds to load:

Thanks to Kevin Lunham (sound recording) and Stefan Hage (photo) for sharing their work.

According to the West Midlands Bird Club there were only a few hundred sightings of this species in the whole of Staffordshire last year. So next time you are on the Green, just spend a few minutes listening for the grasshopper sound that is in fact a bird!

marsh marigold

Another species that has not been seen on the Green for a number of years is the marsh marigold. This member of the buttercup family is also known as the kingcup. I am delighted that in April at least 5 large clumps of this striking plant were flowering near the stream. They are very easy to see, due to the bright yellow colour of their flowers, but if you want a close up view, then you will need a pair of wellies! Hopefully the conditions are now suitable to allow this plant to thrive.

orange tip

The damper side of the Green is now covered in lady's smock (or cuckoo flower as it is often called). Whilst looking at some last week on a coolish morning, I managed to find an orange-tip butterfly hanging off a flower. I even managed to get a photograph, before it flew off!

Just to remind you that we are having our annual "Beating the Bounds" event on Sunday 14th May. Everyone is welcome to come along to find out more about the work that we do on the Green. Further details can be found here