Exploring Nature Walks Broadcroft Quarry 24th of February 2012
Portland has very little in the way of fresh water ponds so the few that do exist are much in demand by the island’s amphibian population. Most are very busy in February especially in mild weather. As today fulfilled both of these requirements we decided to pay a visit to the ponds at the eastern edge of Broadcroft Quarry.
Arriving there we were disappointed to see that the ponds has almost completely dried up and had become choked with vegetation. Even so a little toad spawn could be seen in one of the wet patches and nearby we found a “ball” of toads. This is when a female toad attracts a number of males and the group of them cling together in a ball. A very large and fat female frog was not far away presumably waiting for a male to arrive before laying her eggs.
Just to the north of Broadcroft is Yeoland’s Quarry and here we had great views of a pair of Ravens investigating the cliffs much to the annoyance of the local gulls and magpies. Walking across to the cliff edge we could see a number of Fulmars wheeling around over the railway line footpath.
Back at Bumper’s Lane we enjoyed watching a fine male Kestrel perched on a very small twig right at the top of a Sycamore. No matter how much he was wobbling around he always managed to keep his head perfectly still!
The day’s list: Raven, Fulmar, Kestrel, Frog, Toad