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To look at the Isle of Wight Green Gym web page (contains details of sessions etc) please use the following link :- www.iwgreengym.org.uk.

The link to Twitter is https://twitter.com/iwgreengym

If you would like to leave us any comments then please use this link iwgreengym@gmail.com

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Wed 5th March 2014 - Munsley Bog, Godshill.

Mark's Photographs.









Carrie's Photographs.





With the ground water table as high as it has been recently, we were wondering if Munsley Blog had perhaps turned into Munsley Ocean. First impressions were good, the area looked much as it had done on previous sessions there but once you ventured off the wooden walkway, care had to be taken to avoid the really boggy areas! More than one GGmer was seen to be struggling with a welly that had been sucked down into the quagmire.
With the sun shining, the workforce were soon spread across the whole site - cutting back the brambles and undergrowth that seem to thrive here. All the cuttings were piled into neat stacks around the perimeter, hopefully providing cover for any birds or animals that may need it. It might be my imagination but each GG session held this year seems to have greater numbers in attendance with this one topping them all! Well done to all those who came along - the whole area looked dramatically improved by the time we left.

Carrie's Nature Natter for March.

March can certainly have some pleasant days, although it can occasionally surprise us with a sudden return to wintry weather, while the forward change of the clocks makes for longer daylight hours and a real change from the darkness of winter.  The month is also known for mad March hares, although these are actually female hares endeavouring to resist the advances of the amorous males.  As arable crops are still quite short they can often be seen feeding, and it is much easier to catch a glimpse of these delightful and charming native creatures.

Among our bird life some summer migrants begin to arrive with the wheatear usually among the first, along with the chiff-chaff singing its repetitive and distinctive song.  While out walking on the downs I have also begun to clearly hear the achingly beautiful soaring song of the skylark, which really lifts the spirits making it feel that spring really is here.  Later in the month more summer migrants arrive, while our resident birds such as song thrushes, blackbirds, greenfinches, great tits and robins are 

already singing their hearts out, as they try to attract a mate and mark out potential breeding territories.

Many woodland species are starting to burst into flower with lesser celandines (see Mark's photo above), wood anemone and sweet violets opening their petals to the gradually warming sunshine, while the damp ground will often be carpeted with the bright shiny green leaves of dog’s mercury and ramsons.   The end of the month sees our hedgerows full of the white blossom of the blackthorn, not to be confused with hawthorn which does not flower until May.  You may also find that sure sign of spring in damp places, the furry catkins of the pussy willow, (which are actually male pollen bearing flowers) sending off their pollen to find the female flowers.

Bats are starting to emerge from hibernation on the hunt for flying insects, and each male frog is trying to ensure the eggs laid by the females are fertilised personally by him, although the adults will 

wait in the pond until the weather gets warmer in April.  The first butterflies of the year also start to emerge, while warmer days will see bumblebees buzzing around and ladybirds beginning to appear from the nooks and crannies that have been their winter homes.

Photographs sent in by Carrie and Mark and Nature Natter written by Carrie.....many thanks!

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