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I literally dipped in and out of Cosmeston on 2 May, for a quick look at the dipping pond to see if I could spot any Water voles. I dipped on the voles but I did see Ma Mallard and her two gorgeous ducklings, and a gazillion tadpoles.

180531 5 tadpoles

11 May  I needed to stretch my legs after spending the previous day sorting out after my birding trip so off to Cosmeston I headed. I came in from the north end via Old Cogan farm, where a pair of Swallows was sitting on the wires. I suspect they nest in the old barn as I see them there often over the summer months.

180531 6 swallows

Apart from those Swallows, it was quiet on the bird front and, as a cool wind was blowing, there were no butterflies about either. So, I took lots of photos of newly blooming wildflowers  …

180531 7 Bird's foot trefoil180531 8 Bugle180531 9 Flax180531 10 Scarlet pimpernel

While doing that, I found an interesting little critter mooching around on some leaves (it looked like a weevil without a long snout but I haven’t positively identified it), and I spotted my first cuckoo spit of the season (I just know you’ll be delighted with that find!).

180531 11 snoutless weevil lookalike180531 12 cuckoo spit

15 May  A brief walk through on my way home from Lavernock. I wandered along the edges of Sully brook and then, once again, stopped for a few minutes at the dipping pond. The bad news was that mother Mallard only had one duckling remaining – fingers crossed it makes it to adulthood. The good news was that I saw my first damselflies for the year – both Azure and Large reds were out in numbers.

17 May  I passed through Cossie again, this time on my way home from Sully. A Common whitethroat was showing well in the reeds near the cafe, and a Coot was shepherding her three young offspring around the west lake. The chicks were well developed, which bodes well for their survival.

180531 15 Common whitethroat180531 16 Ma Coot and 3 offspring

20 May  This time my 3-hour mooch was all concentrated at Cosmeston. I went early to avoid the Sunday crowds and the scorching sun, and walked the east and west paddocks from one end to the other and back again, along the various trails. I was looking particularly for orchids but saw only leaves, a few with the stalks of flower buds just emerging, and for butterflies. The Dingy skippers and Common blue butterflies were out in good numbers, and it was a pleasure to watch them flitting to and fro.

24 May  I went early again to Cosmeston but not early enough, as the rain came in almost as soon as I arrived and I didn’t have a coat with me. I lingered long enough to enjoy the glorious Hawthorn blossom that covers the hedgerows like summer snow, before striding quickly homewards.

180531 19 Hawthorn blossom