In a new series of articles, we take a look at the best places to spot wildlife in the north east of England.
These posts are by no means comprehensive, but hopefully informative. They are intended to provide suggestions for visits to the northeast to observe and enjoy nature, as well as some of the wildlife that you can expect to find in these locations.
Based on the reports and sightings of naturalists from the Northeast and personal experiences, I hope these posts can provide inspiration in choosing the destination for your next wilderness walk in the area.
A hidden gem in the heart of urban Tyneside, Silverlink Biodiversity Park is a fantastic place to soak up nature in the northeast. The site was created in 1996 on the site of a former garbage dump declared a local nature reserve in 2006.
Silverlink has a multitude of habitats grouped into an area of just 18 hectares and supports habitats in forests, hedges, wetlands and grassland. The latter is particularly worth a visit in the summer months due to the abundance of invertebrates and the lively flora.
One of the defining features of this urban oasis is its invertebrate community. The grassland areas here are particularly diverse and are home to a remarkable population of Dingy Skipper butterflies in summer. Other butterflies seen here include a good number of Common Blue, Ringlet, Meadow Brown, and Large Skipper; while commas, little tortoiseshell, red admiral and the three more common “whites” are represented.
Day-flying moths can be very common on warmer days in June and July, including a flowering colony of six-point and tight-rimmed five-point burnets, the larval sheaths of which can often be seen on blades of grass throughout the meadow area. Other types seen are Latticed Heath, Mother Shipton, and Silver Y.
The Silverlink Biodiversity Park is known locally for Odonata and dragonflies. On-site damselflies include Common Darter, Southern Hawker, Wide Body Chaser, Large Red, Common Blue, and Azure Damselfly. A Little emperorIn 2019, what was found at the site is only the second county record ever.
The lesser-known groups of insects at Silverlink Biodiversity also deserve attention. Of these, hoverflies are conspicuous and recent journeys have included species such as Cheilosia illustrata, Scaeva pyrastri and many of the showy and abundant Heliophilus pendulus.
Burnet with six points
Batman hover fly (Myathropa florea)
The footballer (Helophilus pendulus)
The botany in the Silverlink Biodiversity Park is a real pleasure. For many, it is the places where bee orchids have the greatest appeal, and in good years many of these beautiful flowers can be seen on the grassland of the place. Northern Marsh Orchid can also be found in damp places; Common Spotted Orchid can appear anywhere on the site.
The Silverlink grasslands are especially interesting in midsummer, when species like Viper’s Bugloss, Common Bird’s-Foot Trefoil, Kidney Vetch, and Common Knapweed are in full bloom. There’s also a lovely area with quaking grass, zigzag clover, and bags of the quirky looking bubble champion.
In denser, greener areas of the site are small areas of Ragged Robin, Bittersweet, Marsh Thistle, and Water Mint, with species such as Water Figwort occasionally appearing and an extensive area of prehisto-looking butterbur.
Due to its urban location, it is also not uncommon to find adventurous, non-native species in Silverlink. This year alone I came across Oriental Poppy, Globe Thistle and two unusual forms of ornamental cranes.
Silverlink isn’t particularly notable for bird life, but the website still offers a good variety of species. Typical forest species such as great spotted woodpecker, bullfinch, nuthatch, tree herbs and jay can be seen; Sparrowhawk, Buzzard and Kestrel can be seen on site. Lucky visitors can also spot long-eared owls.
Coot, Moorhen, and Mallard, and the occasional Tufted Duck, Gray Heron, and Gadwall breed in the small on-site pools. I only heard Water Rail once on site; Although there are some relatively large pieces of riparian vegetation, it is likely that they can be seen year round.
A beautiful range of mammals can be seen at Silverlink, including roe deer, hedgehogs and red fox. In the small forest pockets there is Gray Squirrel; Small mammals seen here include the shrew, wood mouse, and bank vole. Rabbits are fewer in number than they used to be, but remain, and visitors may encounter weasels and stoats on the other side.
Note: We are not the author of this content. For the Authentic and complete version,
Check its Original Source