Autumn colours, fungi and goosander at Nostell Priory

autumn colours at Nostell Priory

autumn colours at Nostell Priory

Nostell Priory seems to be proving popular with WNS members just now with Roger heading there last Friday and bunping into Barbara and Richard, and us there today also bumping into Barbara and Richard! I suspect we will make it one of the outdoor field meetings again next year!

I saw much of what Roger had on his visit with the exception of firecrest but for me it was the autumn colour and good selection of fungi that were the attraction. The woodland around the lower lake was superb in the late autumn sunshine on Remembrance Sunday and the temperatures were positively balmy. We had plenty of fly agaric, honey fungus and the shaggy scalycap pictured here. I only saw female goosander but they were still great to see and the occasional whistle of the wigeon was a delightful sound. We had a single male shoveller on the water too and plenty of goldcrests, treecreeper, nuthatch and long-tailed tits in the woodland.

shaggy scalycap (Pholiota squarrosa)

shaggy scalycap (Pholiota squarrosa)

goosander at Nostell Priory

goosander at Nostell Priory

Brockadale sightings

A trip to Brockodale YWT reserve today yielded a flock of around 20 yellowhammers in the fields adjacent to the car park, the first lesser celandine by the river and primrose in flower on the south bank of the woods. Stinking helibore (Helleborus foetidus) all in flower too.

Lesser celandinePauline also noted two pairs of goosander at Chantry Bridge plus the return of the regular mute swans (cob Y127, pen Y567). A hedgehog in Pauline’s garden last night suggests that the weather is milder and spring is on the way.