Dipping Pond Gatley Carrs

News & Events

Wildlife and Nature Report April-June 2018

Tuesday, 19 Jun 2018


After a cold, wet and late Spring in March and April, nature burst into life in a dry and warm May and June.

APRIL ‘Signs of Spring’ records on the wildlife notice board showed that many plants such as Marsh Marigolds, Wild Garlic, Cherry blossom, Bluebells appeared by the month end, about 1 or 2 weeks late this year. April 22nd ‘Trees and Flowers in Spring’ walk was attended by 12 people. Up to 50 Fritillary flowers appeared from 12th of April.

MAY First brood of Canada goslings (7) on May 4th, second brood (6?) May 14th. Both broods disappeared quickly. New signboard installed by dipping pond in time for the visit of the Green Flag judge on May 9th. Thanks to Peter, Alan and Jim for this excellent new board. Visit of Altrincham Natural History Society identified several new plant records, including Lange-leaved Avens introduced from North America. Although the planned ‘Ugly Bug Ball’ was cancelled, visits from Dave Higginson-Tranter compensated with listings of insects and fungi, many new. The 7 mature Crack Willows on the Gatley Brook path by the nursery fence failed to come into leaf this year, so possibly DEAD? Reported to Anthony Crook SMBC Tree officer who inspected but either he didn’t recognize them or he said of no immediate concern? May plants including Hawthorn, Lords and Ladies, Comfrey, Yellow Iris, Guelder Rose all flowered more or less at the usual time.

JUNE Moorhen chicks reported on June 4th. Wildflower meadow flowers and grasses in full growth with about 10 Southern Marsh Orchids, fewer Ox-eye Daisies this year and widespread Yellow Rattle which seem to be suppressing the grasses. Alan and volunteers cut back the thistles which seem to be declining.

FORTHCOMING EVENTS June 24th ‘Balsam Bash’ 10.00am car park

June 26th ‘ Gatley Festival Evening Walk’ 6.30pm car park

July 1st GCCG stall at Gatley Festival. Help needed.

July first week result of Green Flag application expected. Alan and Jim are going to the presentation in Dewsbury on July 16th

July 7th Visit of Marple Naturalists to be shown around the Carrs LNR



This winter has been one of mixed weather for wildlife, mild damp spells interspersed with cold, windy ones with few days of ice and snow.

JANUARY – Hazel and Alder catkins in flower, first Snowdrops bursting by January 5th. Strong winds brought down one of the 100yr old Turkey Oaks in the railway/Green Close ditch. Successful RSPB Big Birdwatch on January 28th recorded 20 species, including 10 of those on the watch list.

Displays: “Carrs in Winter” and RSPB Birdwatch results

FEBRUARY – Excellent display of Snowdrops under the Norway Maple tree by February 8th, joined in early March by others to the bank to the north along with wild Dafodills. First Celendines seen along Gatley Brook in late February, about the usual time. Very good winter scenes of various habitats shown on Facebook. Bird table vandalised but replaced and a new bird feeder. Bird and bat box survey showed that about 10 bird boxes lost, about 30 still in place and 8 bat boxes, but few new ones erected this year. Fieldfares and Redpolls seen in gardens in the snowy periods.

Displays: “Trees and Buds in Winter”

MARCH – Purple Crocuses planted last autumn finally appeared by March 13th then made a spectacular display. Photos on Facebook showed, Field Speedwell and Lungwort or Pulmonaria (planted) in flower and diverse fungi, Scarlet Elf Cap, Bushing Bracket, Mazegill and Jelly Ear, also yellow lichen Xanthoria with spore capsules, all appearing by March 11th.

Displays: “Signs of Spring and where to see them”

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