Saturday, 4 April 2015

New Season

New life is appearing all around, in keeping with Easter. The Park Pond had a field of watercress with some frogspawn and, more attractively, some nice Marsh Marigolds coming up. The Moorhen pair looked very contented.
Elsewhere in the Park I spotted a single Wood Anemone, much rarer in the Park than Celandines. George

Saturday, 26 July 2014

More Pond Life

More sightings at the Pond include Brown Hawker and Common Darter dragonflies, the latter breeding. The Ponds are really an evidence of how rich Creation can be, if only we learn how to manage the Creator's work as we may.   George

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Summer Days

The new boardwalk and pond in Sandbach Park is full of good stuff. New flowers seen there yesterday included Fool's Watercress, Gipsywort, Ragged Robin and others. Just outside the area is one small Common Spotted Orchid, the only scion so far in the Park from our transplanting rescue of last year. Down in Church Street the Black Spleenwort fern is doing well and has been joined by Common Polypody; the Hard Shield Fern is also spreading. All the rich growth is a real evidence of God's bounty to us through His works, a wonderful addition to His work through His Word. - George 

Thursday, 13 March 2014

The biggest news from the Environment Trail recently is that the magnificent new boardwalk around the (now) three Park ponds is open for walkers. A pair of moorhen are in residence. The sudden warm weather has brought all sorts of life to birds, flowers and insects. The rain and storms caused modest damage but all is now growing again! let's hop our faith survives storms as well! - George

Monday, 20 January 2014

Moving fast

It seems like the year is moving fast now, as the evenings lighten. Also moving fast is a bird I have seen twice recently in the centre of Sandbach. I was standing outside the door of the Literary Institute when I was startled as a bird flew quite low and fast over me. I was even more amazed to realise it was a sparrowhawk! It shot across the roundabout and up Hope Street. A few days later, I watched another sparrowhawk soaring for a full minute or two in circles over the cobbled Square. No doubt all the small birds on the Environment Trail were watching it, too. Such is the bittersweet, perfect but tragic balance of our present world. - George

Thursday, 19 September 2013

A Full Season

This is a long delayed post! The Environment Trail continues in good health but the main news of the season has been the very fine improvement of the Sandbach Park Pond. at the time of writing the planned boardwalk is expected shortly, and the (now) thre ponds, which looked so bare in spring, are now bursting with new life and species, several unknown here before. On behalf of our A Rocha group I have been surveying it every month, my reports being much appreciated by Jez Sanders, the landscape architect and designer, and Mike Benson of the Park's Friends and chair of the Town Council. Our survey reports will now provide a historic base and guide to the newly refurbished Pond's wildlife. Just as a taster, I add below some pictures from the surveys, of Banded Demoiselle and Common Darter dragonflies and of Smooth Newt, trifid Bur-Marigold and of Purple Loosestrife by the pond - George

Monday, 13 May 2013

Bare hope

After a very late start all the wildlife on the Environment Trail is steaming ahead. Seasonal specialties are about, in particular Orange-Tip butterflies. (Note that only the male has orange tips; the female can be told by her delicate green-and-white chequered underwing. Other butterflies about include Speckled Woods, Peacocks, Small Tortoiseshells and Large Whites.
It's great to see such vivid life starting from what seemed such a bare spring. Especially bare was the Sandbach Park Pond area following the recent major re-excavation of what are now three ponds. When all seems lifeless, life is more uregently about to spring up than ever - an Easter message! I have been surveying the pond and one highlight is the pair of Grey Wagtails, a species new to the Park, that have taken up residence. See if you can spot them! - George