Some fantastic opportunities this weekend for photography. When the weather is nice, you just have so many options! Especially when spring decides to kick into action at the same time. Butterflies this weekend; Small Tortoiseshell, Speckled Wood, Brimstone, Peacock and Orange Tip! I'm sure I saw more than that but that was all I managed to properly ID. I finally caught up with that Little Bunting at Forest Farm in Cardiff before it decided to migrate (if it does migrate..) And then spent the rest of the weekend at Llandegfedd where we had some great Birds but not the best opportunities to photograph them due to it being the busiest I've EVER seen it. It was so busy that every inch of grass around the car park was also taken up by cars and the road going up past the car park had lots more cars parked. With the cars came people and many Dogs which were causing even more problems. Dogs being Dogs naturally want to jump in the water and they were doing so all over the Res and with only 2 people working onsite, you can imagine the trouble they were having. A women managed to lock herself in the North toilets due to the lock being broken and we also had young adults turn up with blow up rafts at the North end expecting to be able to just go out on the water. If it wasn't for me being present, Welsh Water would have had a much larger Job on their hands! The amount of times I had to direct the public where to go because of the lack of signs was ridiculous and to top it off I had to deal with a fight between a local Man and a fisherman because the fisherman wasn't happy with the family for walking the wrong way (through no fault of their own) and the Man wasn't happy with being told what to do (Even though the fisherman was correct as they shouldn't have been walking that way as it's for permit holders only).
What a mess, for me, the experience of Llandegfedd has completely changed. It is no longer that place of peace and tranquility and soon, the wildlife will reflect upon the damage that we will inevitably bring. Some good can come from the public having access to the North end and by all means I would hate to deprive people from such a gem of a place but, the negatives will always outweigh the positives in this situation.
Welsh Water have no intensions of hiring more staff from what I've been told and even though the rangers onsite totally agree with what I'm saying, the decision comes from above and they have decided to make Llandegfedd a Public Park. We'll see how well that goes for them.
While all this was going on, an Osprey did arrive at Llandegfedd but took one look at the activity and decided to power right through and didn't even stop for a rest. An Avocet was also spotted today right out in the middle swimming with the Gulls and that is where it stayed all day haven been flushed a few times by passing boats. The Garganey Ducks only stayed for the day of the 5th and were nowhere to be seen the next day.
Other Migrants in the form of Wheatear, Swallows and House Martins all starting making their appearances and it was the wildlife that yet again, saved my day.