Children’s Playground – repairs
Due to essential repairs caused by popular use of the playground, some of the play equipment is not available for use at this time.
Please accept our apologies and rest assured that we will reopen the playground as soon as the remedial work is completed.
Depending on the seasonal temperatures the snowdrops (Galanthus) will start to emerge in Birch Glade – they are located by the stream. Native primroses (Primula vulgaris) are already flowering on the banks near Fishers Field. Many of these primroses have been planted by the Friends of Bushy and Home Parks. This year the daffodils may well flower in the middle of January if the current warm temperatures continue.
With the leaves off the trees their skeletal shapes can be seen in all areas of the Gardens – it is worth looking at them to enjoy the varied shapes. The dogwoods (Cornus) in Canada Glade are still worth looking at this month as the red and gold stems stand out in the low winter sunlight.
The annual programme on Rhododendron ponticum removal is planned to start this January and will run on to March, just before the nesting season. This is part of a nationwide objective to eradicate this invasive species.
Well that is another year over and a new one is beginning. Hopefully you will have recorded some interesting birds in the park over the last year.
If you have visited the park on a regular basis, recording over 100 species should be a target that is easily achieved. If there were some glaring omissions from that list, I would make it your mission to connect with those species this year. Hopefully last year’s blip will not be repeated and the species will not join the ever increasing list of birds that are in decline in the United Kingdom.
The species causing most concern at present in the park is the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker – which were down to one pair in 2013 and only glimpsed once last year.
If the weather remains reasonably mild and the lakes do not freeze over waterfowl numbers on Heron Pond can build up. There isn’t a large variety; the regular being Mallard, Pochard, Tufted, Red Crested Pochard and Coot. Most winters a few Shoveler and Gadwall will put in an appearance.
Finding scarce visitors might mean an early morning visit, scarce birds can be more nervous, so it is worth checking the water bodies first thing in the morning, before too many park users arrive.
Goosanders, the largest of the sawbills were once annual winter visitors but now no longer visit the park.
The good thing with bird watching is you never know what might turn up. The year has started well with two Little Egrets feeding in the channel that runs from just south of Hawthorn Cottage into the Boating Lake.
For more bird news check out The Regent's Park Birds Blog - it also covers Bushy Park.