Plenty to see at the reserve
INHOLMS Clay Pit Local Nature Reserve, near North Holmwood, is an excellent example of what can be achieved through good management of an old industrial site.
The area of land was originally a large clay pit which supplied the Dorking Brick Factory and is looked after by Surrey Wildlife Trust.
Although in its infancy (but with the prospect of fascinating development) the reserve is well worth a visit.
At least three species of migrant warbler can be confirmed as breeding on the site: the chiffchaff, willow warbler and blackcap (pictured).
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Of these, the blackcap has the richest song and is often referred to as the poor man's nightingale.
While the song is impressive, the male tends to deliver it from a concealed spot within the scrub that comprises its habitat.
Recent research has shown that there are two distinct populations of blackcap. British birds are known to migrate to the southern Mediterranean and North Africa in the winter, while those that breed in Germany tend to migrate to Britain.
The strident song of the wren can be recognised by the rolling of its "Rs" in the middle of its phrases.
The cool, showery weather of recent days has not been ideal for butterflies. However, in warmer, sunnier interludes, the spot comma, brimstone, orange tip and speckled wood can be seen.
Although not currently rich in flowers, by June the reserve will host the common spotted orchid.