Autumn on Strike

The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales (WTSWW) have been receiving reports and seeing for themselves some fairly odd sightings for autumn.

Whilst our summer visitors have left us and our winter visitors such as fieldfares and redwings have arrived it would seem that not all our wildlife is aware that winter is on the horizon.

Reports of Daffodils Coming into Flower (M J  Clark)

Reports of Daffodils Coming into Flower (M J Clark)

This November has been unseasonably warm which has meant that some animals such as bats and hedgehogs have delayed their winter hibernation. With plenty of insects still around this may not be currently a huge concern although a sudden drop in temperature may leave some animals out in the cold.

Bats would normally be hibernating at this time of year and yet WTSWW have received reports of a Daubentons bat in Swansea and Lyndsey Maiden of the Trust has seen pipistrelle bats flying in Carmarthenshire.  The Trust has even received reports of frogs mating in Carmarthen.

Many plants are still producing flowers, with sightings of greater stitchwort, red campion, knapweed, cow parsley and hogweed producing new growth and flowers.  Southern hawker dragonflies and red admirals are still flying on sunny days as are wasps and other small invertebrates which would normally be dying off.

You may have noticed that trees such as hazels are still keeping their leaves at the moment or even daffodils coming into flower. All of this unusual behaviour seems to be down to the unseasonably warm weather. There are indications that this is part of a longer term trend and whilst this is not the warmest November on record this is probably due to the El Nina effect cooling us down.

The Wildlife Trusts are concerned about the robustness of wildlife being able to cope with an unpredictable climate.  Our unusual weather will put pressures on nature’s systems and it will take time to see how she copes.

If you see any more unusual sightings please do send your reports to WTSWW’s Facebook page http://on.fb.me/WTSWWonFacebook