Wednesday, 5 June 2019

Beddington Farmlands and the Wandle Valley Regional Park

Viridor have restricted our access to Beddington Farmlands so I've decided to use the opportunity to explore the wider Wandle Valley Regional Park this year. To the north of the farmlands is MITCHAM COMMON , part of the same Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC) and overall (compared to the farmlands) is relatively under watched. I did bump into another birder Nick (who reported a Rosy-coloured Starling on the common from 18th May!) and also popped in to see the Mitcham Common warden Martin. There is quite a bit of historical recording from the area with some rare localised species. The habitat is acid grassland, heathland and other grassland and scrub with several water bodies so it is quite different to the farmlands and there are entomological and botanical communities that are unique to this part of the SINC.

If all goes to plan I'll do targeted visits to several key areas over the coming season 1) Mill Green, 2) The Gun Site, 3) One Island  4) Bidders Pond 5) Mill House Ecology Centre Field, 6) Seven Islands and to a lesser degree 7) The Golf Course

Beyond Mitcham Common there are other key green spaces that make up the Wandle Valley Regional Park including the Watermeads, Ravensbury Park and Morden Hall Park. Further north there is Lambeth Cemetery and St Goerge's Park and also the Thames. To the south of the farmlands is obviously Beddington Park but there is also Carshalton Park and the Grove on one arm of the Wandle and Wandle Park on the other.  There are also isolated green spaces and of course the Wandle green corridor itself. 

The long term plan is to manage Beddington Farmlands as the coreland of the Wandle Valley Regional Park so considering things are such a mess at the farmlands at the moment seems to make sense to start exploring this area and expanding the recording area- who knows maybe in future we will develop the Beddington Farmlands Bird and Willdife report into the 'Beddington Farmlands and Wandle Valley Regional Park Bird and Wildlife Report'. It was always a long term objective so seems a good time to start that now. 

I've got a new bike so looking forward to exploring over the next few weeks. 

 Green Hairstreak on the heather patch on the Ecology Centre Field
 Emperor eating a Cinnabar- there have been good numbers of Cinnabar in the Beddington Farmlands light trap recently 
 One Island on Mitcham Common
 Can't get away from the incinerator! This is the view from one of the Mitcham Common view points. 
 Fields of Sorrel on Mill Green 
 Pale Oak Beauty at Beddington Farmlands- the empty circles on the hind wing are distinctive
 I identified this as Cream Wave (Beddington Farmlands) 
 Went for Rustic-shoulder Knot on this one (Beddington Farmlands) 
 I went for Notocelia trimaculana on this 
 Another Foxglove Pug- stunning little things 
 Crown Vetch growing on the main railway bridge over the farmlands - need to check but I think a first for the farmlands 
Had these tell tale signs of Hornet Moth in a poplar in a customers garden last week 


barry said...

Good work! And that reminds me I must get my rubber tyres steed out of the garage and get pedalling again. Oh yeah! I saw the C bird I spoke about yesterday. The Oxon Feather.

Peter Alfrey said...

Great stuff! Cheers Barry!

RJB said...

Hi Peter,
I’m fairly sure that the moth you’ve ID’d as a Cream Wave is in fact a Satin Wave. I trap in Nutfield and have had SW twice but never had CW. If you compare your image against photos online it should be possible to see the difference between the cross-lines of each species. Or you could post it on one of moth sites online, iNaturalist and BirdForum has the most expertise I think.
Richard Bartlett