Thursday, 10 May 2018

Tuesday May 1st to Thursday May 10th

2017 Annual Report

Our 2017 Annual Report is now available to buy for £15.

This premium, full colour, 145 page, A4, glossy report documents the year at Tice's Meadow and showcases some of the superb wildlife photographs taken on site. All proceeds go towards the work we do on site.

Please email ticesmeadow@hotmail.co.uk for more details.




Quarry Life Awards

You can follow our progress in the Quarry Life Awards on our dedicated blog.


Reporting Breeding Schedule 1 Species

As we now approach breeding season, please remember that it is a criminal offence to intentionally disturb potentially breeding Schedule 1 Species on or near the nest.

From March 22nd, no more potentially breeding Schedule 1 Species should be reported publicly.

PLEASE do still report privately to us via email, Facebook message or Twitter direct message, so we can collate the records.

Our updated Bird Reporting Policy can be seen here.

These rules are in place for the interests of the birds.



Tuesday 1st May

David Smith reported a Common Sandpiper, 2 Whimbrel,  2 Swift and a Buzzard this morning.

In addition, Kevin Duncan reported a Redshank and 5 Wheatear this morning.

In addition, Murray Nurse reported a Hobby this afternoon.

In addition, Mark Elsoffer reported a Nuthatch, 2 Common Tern, a Garden Warbler, a Sparrowhawk, a Red Kite and a Buzzard today.

Kevin Duncan reported that the first pair of Canada Geese have hatched 5 young.

Another, in a recent series of, momentous day at Tice's Meadow saw 8 volunteers take delivery of, and install, our new site signage today. A combined A1 map and A2 noticeboard was installed at the main entrance, along with lectern mounted interpretation panels at Ray's Gap (Meadow Wildlife), Horton's Mound (Butterflies) and the Silt Ponds (Amphibians). Two wall mounted interpretation panels (Woodland Birds and Meadow/Hedgerow Birds will be installed at a later date). Waymarker discs were also attached to our waymarker posts, so visitors can now follow our 1.5mile long self-guided Biodiversity Trail.

The Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership rangers and volunteers were also on site today building soft revetments for Arnhem Bridge - read about it here.

(c) Steve Minhinnick - Volunteers Erecting the Main Entrance Board
(c) Mark Elsoffer - The Main Entrance Board
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Looks Like a Proper Nature Reserve
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Waymarker Disc
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Meadow Wildlife Interpretation Panel
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Amphibians Interpretation Panel
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Butterflies Interpretation Panel


Wednesday 2nd May

Kevin Duncan reported 2 Whimbrel and 2 Whinchat today.

Whinchat is the 121st bird species recorded on site this year.


Thursday 3rd May

Richard Seargent reported a Snipe and 3 Wheatear this morning.

In addition, Mark Elsoffer reported 12 Common Tern this evening.

At least 7 male Emperor moths were attracted to a lure on Horton's Mound this afternoon.

A team of volunteers spent the morning working hard setting up the BioBlitz HQ.

A team of licensed bird ringers, lead by Roger Dickey, spent the afternoon trapping and ringing birds.

A quiet night in the moth traps saw the following species recorded:
- 2 Hebrew Character.
- 2 Clouded Drab.
- 1 Common Quaker.
- 1 Chocolate-tip (a new species for the site).
- 1 Brindled Pug.


(c) Dave Smith - Smooth Newt
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Moving the Swift Tower Nest Box
(c) Mark Elsoffer - BioBlitz HQ
(c) Mark Elsoffer - TMBG Display
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Hedgerow & Meadow Birds Interpretation Panel
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Swift Tower Nest Box
(c) Mark Elsoffer - A Freshly Ringed Bullfinch


Friday 4th May

BioBlitz Day 1
This afternoon saw the official site opening of Tice's Meadow Nature Reserve.

We were delighted to welcome representatives of Hanson, Heidelberg Cement, Nature After Minerals, the BTO, the RSPB, the Surrey Bird Club, the Minerals Products Association, Farnham Town Council, Surrey County Council, the Badshot Lea Community Association, the Badshot Lea Infants School, the Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership, the Blackwater Valley Countryside Trust and the local press to help us celebrate the site opening.

A formal reception at the Kiln saw speeches made by the CEO of Hanson UK, Andy Duncan from Hanson and Simon Elson from Surrey County Council. The guests were then bussed to site where the new bridge was the site of a ribbon cutting ceremony by the Mayor of Farnham. A tour around the site then followed for all of the guests.

It was good to see so many old faces who were key to the development of the nature reserve, including Dr David Smith (the original Tice's birder), Tony Anderson (our old, and much missed, ranger), David Brittain (the site landscape architect) and many many more.

Hanson's official press release about the site opening can be read here.

The Blackwater Valley Countryside Partnership's blog about the site opening can be read here.

Steve Chastell (Surrey Bird Club Chairman), on behalf of the Surrey Bird Club, presented us with an interpretation panel for our new shelter - thank you to the Surrey Bird Club for your generous donation.

A team of licensed bird ringers, lead by Roger Dickey, spent the day trapping and ringing birds. They also surveyed all of the nest boxes in the survey area on site today.

Martin Angel of the Bourne Conservation Group joined us for moth trapping this evening.

70 species of bird were recorded today, including 2 Lapwing, a Little Egret, a Gadwall, a Great Crested Grebe, 12 Common Tern, 3+ Garden Warbler, a Coal Tit, a Yellow Wagtail, a Wheatear and a Peregrine.

Moths trapped last night were:
- 1 Knot Grass.
- 1 Muslin.
- 3 Nut-tree Tussock (a new species for the site).
- 1 Swallow Prominent (a new species for the site).
- 1 Swallow-tailed (a new species for the site).
- 1 Hebrew Character.
- 1 Clouded Drab.
- 1 Pebble Prominent.
- 1 Pale Prominent.
- 2 Brindled Pug.
- 1 Brimstone.

Murray Nurse reported a new species for the site:
- Saint George's Mushroom (Calocybe gambosa).

Martin Angel reported 2 new species for the site:
- White-legged Snake Millipede (Tachypodoiulus niger).
- Common Cockchafer (Melolontha melolontha).

(c) Mark Cutts - A Very Funky Great Tit Nest
(c) Murray Nurse - Birders on Horton's Mound
(c) Murray Nurse - Displays in the Marquee
(c) Murray Nurse - Guests on Pegasus Bridge
(c) Murray Nurse - Speckled Wood
(c) Murray Nurse - Saint George's Mushroom
(c) Richard Seargent - Chocolate-tip
(c) Mark Elsoffer - The Meadow
(c) Mark Elsoffer - The Campsite
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Reception at the Kiln
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Ribbon Cutting
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Guests at Pegasus Bridge
(c) Mark Elsoffer - David, Richard, Simon & the Mayor
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Handover of the Surrey Bird Club Interpretation Panel
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Campers Around the Fire


Saturday 5th May

BioBlitz Day 2
The Surrey Mammal Group lead a popular walk around site surveying the small mammal traps this morning. 12 Wood Mice were recorded.

Richard Seargent lead a large group of visitors around site on a bird watching walk this morning.

Steve Bailey of the Surrey Bat Group lead a well attended bat walk around site this evening, recording 4 species of bat.

Paul Eggleton, an entomologist at the Natural History Museum took a number of soil samples from site to anaylse for invertebrates, whilst Stephen Miles searched the site for flying invertebrates.

Scouts from 2nd Aldershot Scout Group spent the morning building bug hotels on site as part of our Biodiversity Trail.

A team of licensed bird ringers, lead by Roger Dickey, spent the day trapping and ringing birds.

A visiting birder reported an Oystercatcher this afternoon.

This is only the 31st sighting of Oystercatcher on site.

In addition, Sean Foote reported a Tawny Owl this evening.

Tawny Owl is the 122nd bird species recorded on site this year.


Moths trapped last night were:
- 2 Pale Prominent.
- 1 Scorched Carpet (a new species for the site).
- 1 Powdered Quaker (a new species for the site).
- 2 Sallow Kitten (a new species for the site).
- 1 Common Wave.
- 1 Iron Prominent.
- 1 Oak-tree Pug (a new species for the site).
- 1 Clouded Drab.

Carey Lodge reported a new species for site today:
- A Rust Fungus (Melampsora euonymi-caprearum).

(c) Mark Cutts - 2nd Year Female Jay Being Ringed
(c) Richard Seargent - Swallow Prominent
(c) Richard Seargent - Muslin
(c) Anthony George - Garden Warbler
(c) Anthony George - 2nd Year Female Jay Being Ringed
(c) Anthony George - Large Red Damselfly
(c) Carey Lodge - Melampsora euonymi-caprearum
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Ringing Demonstration
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Visitors on Horton's Mound
(c) Mark Elsoffer - The Catering Crew
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Ringing Demonstration
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Ringing Demonstration
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Bat Walk About to Begin


Sunday 6th May

BioBlitz Day 3
Richard Seargent lead a large group of visitors around site on a bird watching walk this morning.

A team of licensed bird ringers, lead by Roger Dickey, spent the day trapping and ringing birds.

Dave Baker reported 5 Great Crested Grebe this morning.

In addition, Murray Nurse reported a Little Egret, 4 Common Tern, a Common Gull, a Yellow Wagtail, a Raven, a Red Kite and a Kestrel this afternoon.

Abi Jacobs reported 2 new species for the site:
- A Jumping Spider (Marpissa muscosa).
- Panzer's Nomad Bee (Nomada panzeri).

Sean Foote reported a new species for the site:
- Horse Leech (Haemopis sanguisuga).


BioBitz Summary
Our BioBlitz was a massive success, with an estimated 150 people attending over the weekend, raising around £400 for the Tice's Meadow Bird Group.

75 species of bird were recorded during the BioBlitz.

112 birds, of 22 species, were ringed during the BioBlitz, made up of:
- 5 Long-tailed Tit.
- 7 Wren.
- 2 Chiffchaff.
- 8 Robin.
- 7 Blackcap.
- 5 Bullfinch.
- 1 Sedge Warbler.
- 3 Garden Warbler.
- 9 Reed Warbler.
- 16 Great Tit.
- 3 Goldfinch.
- 7 Blue Tit.
- 4 Whitethroat.
- 2 Reed Bunting.
- 7 Dunnock.
- 7 Greenfinch.
- 2 House Sparrow.
- 4 Song Thrush.
- 10 Blackbird.
- 1 Jay.
- 1 Green Woodpecker.
- 1 Magpie.

A survey of the new nest boxes found that an impressive 65% (9 Blue Tits, 7 Great Tits) of the boxes with holes were occupied, but none of the open fronted ones.

15 new species for the site were recorded during the BioBlitz (with some more records possibly to emerge at a later date):
- Chocolate-tip (moth) (Clostera curtula).
- Nut-tree Tussock (moth) (Colocasia coryli).
- Swallow Prominent (moth) (Pheosia tremula).
- Swallow-tailed (moth) (Ourapteryx sambucaria).
- Scorched Carpet (moth) (Ligdia adustata).
- Powdered Quaker (moth) (Orthosia gracilis).
- Sallow Kitten (moth) (Furcula furcula).
- Oak-tree Pug (moth) (Eupithecia dodoneata).
- A Jumping Spider (Marpissa muscosa).
- Horse Leech (Haemopis sanguisuga).
- Panzer's Nomad Bee (Nomada panzeri).
- Saint George's Mushroom (Calocybe gambosa).
- A Rust Fungus (Melampsora euonymi-caprearum).
- White-legged Snake Millipede (Tachypodoiulus niger).
- Common Cockchafer (Melolontha melolontha).

A massive thank you to everyone who helped out at our BioBlitz, especially the volunteers who stayed until the bitter end and dismantled the BioBlitz HQ - your efforts are much appreciated.

(c) John Hunt - Whitethroat
(c) Sean Foote - A Hoverfly (Epistrophe eligans)
(c) Sean Foote - A Jumping Spider (Marpissa muscosa)
(c) Sean Foote - Panzer's Nomad Bee
(c) Richard Seargent - Lords and Ladies
(c) Richard Seargent - Three-cornered Leek
(c) Richard Seargent - Iron Prominent
(c) Richard Seargent - Sallow Kitten
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Alex Releases a Ringed Bird
(c) Mark Elsoffer - A Green Woodpecker Being Ringed
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Bird Watching Walk
(c) Mark Elsoffer - The Weekend's Bird List


Monday 7th May

John Hunt reported a Common Sandpiper this morning.

Kevin Duncan reported a Broad-bodied Chaser dragonfly today - the first of the year.

(c) John Hunt - Reed Warbler
(c) John Hunt - Garden Warbler


Tuesday 8th May

Kevin Duncan reported 3 Shelduck this morning.

(c) Paul Mannering - Speckled Wood


Wednesday 9th May

No reports.

(c) Alex Brown - Grass Snake


Thursday 10th May

Mark Elsoffer reported a Dunlin, a Greenshank, 2 Lapwing, a Teal, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 8 Common Tern, 300+ Swift, a Kestrel, 5 Red Kite, 4 Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk today.

In addition, Steve Minhinnick reported a Little Gull this morning.

Greenshank is the 123rd species of bird recorded on site this year.

This is only the 16th sighting of Little Gull on site.

Mark reported 2 broods of Canada Geese - one of 3 and one of 5.

Steve Minhinnick reported an Emperor Moth on Horton's Mound this morning (un-lured).

Grim Styles and the guys from Bells Piece were tilling the Bells Piece Wildflower Meadow in preparation for sowing tomorrow - great work guys!

(c) Mark Elsoffer - Preparing the Bells Piece Wildflower Plot
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Preparing the Bells Piece Wildflower Plot
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Preparing the Bells Piece Wildflower Plot
(c) Mark Elsoffer - Preparing the Bells Piece Wildflower Plot




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