This week saw the final badger watching experience taking place and the wildlife on the reserve did not disappoint. Not only did we get a fantastic view of five badgers grooming and playing at the sett, but we were also treated to roe deer grazing in the woods, bats hunting beside the river and even a kingfisher speeding by the river in the last rays of evening sun. Definitely finishing the wildlife watching season with a bang!
On Saturday we also had a Victorian walk with our guide Lady Geraldine Lockhart-Ross, taking in the features on the reserve from the days when poets, artists and the aristocracy would visit the waterfalls and wander the woods of the Bonnington Estate. These days the reserve is accessible for everyone to enjoy, whether just going for a walk along the Clyde or attending one of our events. We also have different groups visiting us and on Friday I was lucky enough to take part in a native tree identification course on the reserve run with the Clyde and Avon Valley Partnership. Despite the rain I was able to learn a lot about the native species present in our woodlands so will be out putting my knowledge and identification skills to the test before autumn sets in and the leaves start to fall.
Even though summer feels like it is drawing to a close there is still plenty of wildlife out on the reserve. While carrying out butterfly surveys I have been lucky enough to see some fantastic Red Admirals and Small tortoiseshells and there are also plenty of bumblebees visiting the late summer flowers and grasshoppers chirruping from the undergrowth. Even at the end of summer a walk through the reserve is bound to result in a sighting of some interesting and exciting species.
Unfortunately it is also my last week as the Falls of Clyde seasonal ranger. It has been a pleasure working on such a fantastic reserve and I have enjoyed every minute of it, from staying in the caravan over the peregrine breeding season, leading groups on the badger watches and guided walks and of course updating the Falls of Clyde blog! I will definitely be visiting the reserve again, but for now it’s off to pastures new!
Alex Kekewich – Falls of Clyde Seasonal Ranger