Latest Sightings January 2020

Click on the link to send in your sightings to help us monitor Emm Brook wildlife.This type of ‘citizen science’ allows us to get a clearer picture of what is happening.

For previous months sightings see Archive

The "Area Seen" refers to the 10 sections that the Brook has been split into for monitoring purposes (see Wildlife page under Monitoring ).

For what you can expect to see on the Emm this month, click here January

All sightings unless stated are from personal observations by Eddie Napper

Click on any picture to see a larger image

What is this life if full of care , we have no time to stand and stare. Leisure - W. H. Davies.


29/01/20 In Area 10, 2 Ring necked Parakeet were seen calling and flying across the Car Park field.

28/01/20 Paul Bright Thomas was watching his Area 4 garden and the skies above it this morning and saw a Herring Gull ,1 Mistle Thrush , 2 Buzzard heading South West and 3 Greenfinch .

26/01/20 Great spotted Woodpecker Waiting in for a new washing machine to be delivered meant time spent watching the feeders again in my Area 5 garden. Highlights were Great spotted Woodpecker and 1 Redwing sat in a neighbours tree. However several people were out and about. In Area 8 at 08:15 Will Day saw 3 Little Egret 1 in the Emm and 2 perched in a nearby dead tree.Paul O'Neil was keeping a watchfull eye on Area 7 and saw a Kestrel hovering around Queen's Road, 2 Common Buzzard one adult, one juv. Mobbed by 2 Carrion Crow and a female Kestrel . 15 Linnet were on the Bovis construction site North of Queen's Road. Area 1 today was covered by Sean Stevenson. His sightings included a Common Buzzard over the horse paddocks at Chapel Green.4 Grey Heron In the flooded field North of Ludgrove School regularly seen together here and 7 Lapwing in a flooded cow scrape East of track down toward Gorrick Woods.

25/01/20 Nuthatch With my garden bird feeders fully stocked, I was ready to give an hour to the RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch which runs from the 25th Jan to 27th Jan.

For further info on how to take part Click here Its not to late to join.

Seen in my Area 5 garden in 1 hour were (maximum counts)3 .Wood Pigeon, 2 Collared Dove, 2 Magpie,4 Starling, 2 Blue Tit,1 Great Tit,4 Goldfinch,1 Robin and 1 Nuthatch. Also heard but not included in the survey were Song Thrush and Blackbird. In Area 10 a Kestrel flew along the east side of the Dinton Activity Centre car park towards grounds east of Lavell’s Lake seen by Fraser Cottington.

24/01/20 Little Owl Back from a few days away undertaking my Annual Bird watching pilgrimage to North Norfolk I decided to checkout the Emm to see what was about.In Area 10 a Barn Owl was seen in the car park field by Nick Kightley. Also seen was a Green Woodpecker. In Area 1 at Chapel Green a Little Owl was sitting in its usual Oak tree adjacent to the road to Ludgrove School and at least 30 Black headed Gull were bathing in a large puddle of water in the fields.Plenty of Corvids( Jackdaw, Carrion Crow,Rook were also visible.

19/01/20 In Area 10 a Kestrel was seen on the wires in the Car Park field by Alan Rymer and 3 Skylark were seen from the bottom of the Car park field, over the landfill by Fraser Cottington.

18/01/20 Common Buzzard Once the fog had cleared and the frost had gone it turned into a really nice day. Seen along the Emm were a total of 36 species this morning. In Area 10 a Grey Wagtail was on the beach by the Dinton Activity Centre On the old Golf Course,2 Mistle Thrush ,20 Fieldfare ,18 Redwing were seen by Brian Bennett. A Skylark was also seen from the bottom of the Car park field, over the landfill. In Area 1 a Coal Tit was seen in Gorrick Woods, a Common Buzzard was waiting in the trees and a Green Woodpecker was heard.Nuthatch A Nuthatch was by Kingfisher Bridge in Area 4 and a flock of Redwing were feeding off the floor near Ripplestream Bridge. Redwing A Goldcrest was swiftly moving through the riverside vegetation , Great spotted Woodpecker was heard calling from the adjacent trees and a Stock Dove was also heard.

16/01/20 In Area 1 at Chapel Green adjacent to the road to Ludgrove School a Little Owl was seen sitting in the Oak trees by Rick Dawson also seen was a Mistle Thrush .

15/01/20 With the wind and rain of the last few days finally abating, it was safe to go out and 3 Bullfinch were seen in the Area 10 Car Park Field by Tim James.At 16.30 3 Mallard were flying around my Area 5 garden.

11/01/20 40 + Meadow Pipit were flying around on the landfill and 6 Little Egret over the Car Park Field in Area 10, meanwhile a Barn Owl was seen looking out of its box in the Wet Meadow. All sightings by John McGovan.

08/01/20 Cormorrant In Area 1 a large flock of 100 Redwing were seen in trees around the fields between Gorrick Plantation and Chapel Green by Patrick Crowley. The birds were calling loudly. Also seen were 2 Mistle Thrush feeding on Ivy berries.Grey Heron At Heathlake, also in Area 1 the island trees were shared by Cormorrant, Grey Heron and 30 Black headed Gull .

05/01/20 In Area 10 a Grey Wagtail was on the beach at the Dinton Activity Centre seen by Fraser Cottington.

04/01/20 In Area 5 in the early morning gloom 3 Redwing was seen in my neighbours Ash tree. Meanwhile in Area 10 a Mistle Thrush was seen near the Old Golf Course by John McGovan and 26 Pied Wagtail were feeding on the landfill viewed from end of car park field,along with a Sparrowhawk both seen by Roger Stansfield.

03/01/20 A Barn Owl was seen again in its box at the Area 10 Wet Meadow , Lavells Lake by Geoff Emmett.

02/01/20 A male Goldeneye was on the north end of Black Swan Lake in Area 10 close to the Dinton Activity Centre seen by Tim James.Down by Kingfisher Bridge in Area 4 at least 35 noisy Goldfinch were seen feeding in the riverside trees.

01/01/20 In Area 10 a Barn Owl was seen entering and exiting its box in the Wet Meadow at Lavells Lake early morning. A Sparrowhawk was also seen over the Car Park field. In Area 1, alongside the road to Ludgrove School a Little Owl was sitting in its usual tree and 30 Redwing flew from the same tree. Several Ring necked Parakeets were heard calling.



Buff-tailed bumblebee Finally an Insect was seen today. Flying in the sunlight and feeding off the Pussy Willow in Area 7 was a Queen Buff-tailed bumblebee Bombus terrestris .

Plants/ Trees


Loddon Lily In Area 10 some of the Loddon Lily Corylus avellana have come into flower


Harts tounge Fern Seen in Area 1 at Gorrick Woods was Hart's-tongue Asplenium scolopendrium The Hart's-tongue fern is a hardy fern of damp, shady places in woodlands. It has simple, tongue-shaped, glossy, green leaves that have orange spores on their undersides.


Cuckoo Pint The first signs of Cuckoo Pint Arum maculatum are just starting to appear through the ground in Area's 4, 5 & 10.

07/01/20  Loddon Lily A walk in Area 10 at lunchtime by the Dinton Activity Centre and Loddon Lily Corylus avellana

are starting to appear. Hazel Catkins The Catkins of Hazel Corylus avellana are also putting on a fine display.Albeit a bit early.The catkins are the familiar flowers of the hazel, but these just the male flowers which open to scatter their pollen, the female flowers are much smaller and easily overlooked. Each hazel will have flowers of both sexes, the catkins on the ends of the twigs and the female flowers a little further down.

Why do leaves change colour


24/01/20 Oakmoss In Area 10 the Oakmoss Evernia prunastri lichen was seen on Bramble Rubus fruticosus . Oakmoss is considered a foliose lichen (meaning it is "leafy" in structure and is only attached to its substrate at specific points) and can be found growing on trees, (but not in this case). Interestingly, oakmoss is commonly used in various cosmetic items (soaps, lotions, perfumes) for its musky odor as well as for its ability to function as a fixative for other frangrances.

Amphibians and Reptiles


23/01/20 In Area 10 an American Mink Neovision vision was seen near the Emm by Simon Bartlam.

15/01/20 In Area 5 a Red Fox Vulpes vulpes was seen running across Arthur Road at 22:05 .


Grey Squirrel Alongside the river in Area 4 near Kingfisher Bridge,at least 6 Grey Squirrel Sciurus carolinensis were seen "playing" in the lunchtime sunlight.

04/01/20 At 05:50 this morning 2 Red Fox Vulpes vulpes were seen running through Brookside in Area 5 .

01/01/20 Alongside the river in Area 10 on the landfill were 3, grazing Roe Deer Capreolus capreolus .

Fish/ Crustaceans