Brian Taylor sends these observations and thoughts – “at Gorpley dam yesterday (Sunday 20th March) I came across a bat, which I took to be a pipistrelle as it was quite small, hawking for flies around the dam wall and the water treatment plant (particularly the pond), in broad daylight around mid-day. Presumably it had woken up hungry!  I wondered whether they might roost in the old mine adits?   Have others been seen emerging from hibernation?

On the moor nearby I’ve seen snipe recently, and yesterday a surprisingly confiding golden plover -with white underparts apparently indicating winter plumage, or a first summer male- and got to thinking its that time of the year when we need to be talking to dog owners about the need to keep their pets under close control on moorland.  There was an excellent article in the Rochdale paper recently by someone from Lancs Wildlife Trust.  He wrote it from the point of view of a responsible dog owner.  As you’re no doubt aware, there’s still/also a need for more and better notices at access points round here …”

with best wishes, Brian.