Archive | Natural History

Colchester has an array of natural wildlife which is all around us. Some, like pigeons, squirrels and garden birds we see every day, whereas others are a little more elusive and harder to spot. Here is a selection of some of the local wildlife found in and around Colchester’s parks.

Blue tit

Blue Tits

Blue Tits The Blue Tit is one of the most recognisable garden birds in the country; with their yellow breast, blue wings, blue cap and a green back with a black and white face. Belonging to the family Paridae, their Latin name is Cyanistes Caeruleus and are one of the smallest of our native birds. […]

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Common Adder

Common Adder

Common Adder Yes, there are snakes in Colchester and the Adder is the only venomous snake native to this country, as opposed to the Smooth Snake and the Grass Snake, which are both harmless. This one was photographed at the Fingringhoe Wick Nature Reserve, whilst others have been seen on Mersea Island and up at […]

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Emerald Damselfly

Emerald Damselfly

Emerald Damselfly If you are walking around the nature reserve at Colchester Zoo or by the lake in Lower Castle Park, look carefully at the wildlife by the water’s edge, you may well spot an Emerald Damselfly. They are beautiful little creatures, easily visible due to their distinctive colour, assuming you can spot one, as […]

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Grey Heron

Grey Heron

The Grey Heron If you’ve walked through lower castle park or perhaps at Abberton Reservoir and looked closely at the birds on the water you might have spotted this bird. This grey heron was photographed on the lake in lower castle park and not only larger than many other water birds but quite destinctive in […]

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young pike

Pike in the River Colne

Young pike visible in the River Colne This is a young pike spotted swimming in the River Colne in Castle Park and was very visible in the river’s clear waters. Pikes are members of the Esox genus of fresh fish and have elongated, torpedo-like form of predatory fishes, with sharply pointed heads and sharp teeth. […]

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Pigeon head Photographed In St Michaels Colchester

Wood Pigeon

Wood pigeon in my garden These birds are not only the largest of all the pigeons found in the UK but the most common also. Their Latin name is Columba Palumbus and they are a member of the same family species as doves. It’s estimated that there are over ten million of them, all over […]

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Squirrel on the fence post

Grey Squirrel

Grey squirrel in my garden The grey squirrel was introduced to the British mainland sometime in the 19th century, and since then their numbers are estimated at over two million. This means that there are around twelve grey squirrels to every red, pushing out our native red squirrel to selected areas of the country only, […]

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Slow worm photographed in Colchester

Slow worms

Slow worms Hidden away in our gardens is a creature which isn’t visible too often. Slow worms (Anguis fragilis) are often mistaken for snakes and many people kill them not realising exactly what they are, many being killed by domestic cats. Slow worms are harmless reptiles found in woodlands, grasslands, hedgerows and areas of domestic […]

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