We are interested in finding out about wildlife sightings in our parish.
The blue skies and welcome sunshine brought out the raptors over Bisley Road Cemetery. We had a group of 3 buzzards, and the exciting appearance of a red kite, which didn’t impress the gulls as much as us, who tried to shoo it away!
November 2017 Autumn in the Old Cemetery Local Nature Reserve
Green Spaces Ranger, Mat, spotted this Comma butterfly taking a rest on our tractor mower.
12th October 2017
Green Spaces Manager, Mike Dando, was lucky enough to capture a picture of this kingfisher by the canal near to the town centre.
22nd August 2017, New Cemetery
This lovely picture of a common blue butterfly was taken in the new cemetery.
25th July 2017, Bank Gardens
This sparrowhawk was spotted enjoying breakfast by Green Spaces Ranger Joe Graham.
28th April 2017, Stroud Cemetery
Two adders have been spotted in the cemetery. Our Rangers managed to capture a picture of one of them.
10th April 2017, Stroud Cemetery
Slow worms spotted enjoying the spring weather in Stroud cemetery nature reserve.
20th July 2016, old cemetery
Adder and Essex skipper butterfly spotted by green spaces team members, Matt and Tony.
July 2016, old cemetery
Kestrels, Buzzards, Green woodpecker and Great spotted woodpecker heard by green spaces team member, Matt.
11th July 2016, Wallbridge
Common field grasshopper in nymph stage spotted and photographed by Paul Sergeant.
12th April 2016, Stroud Cemetery
1st house martin spotted.
11th April 2016, Stroud Cemetery
1st swallow spotted.
4th April 2016, Stroud Cemetery
Black caps and chiff chaffs arrived and started singing. Followed by willow warbler a week later. The first week of April also provided sightings of orange tip, brimstone and tortoise shell butterflies. These have become more numerous in recent warm days and have been joined by peacock butterflies and 4 species of solitary bees (one of which was the tawny mining bee).
14th March 2016, Stroud Cemetery
Common lizard and grass snake spotted by our Green Spaces team. As it is early for reptile activity this is a good indication that spring is on its way!
5th February 2016 (at approximately 11.30am), Coming from St Laurence Church Yard and off towards Lansdown
Fox passing through Bank Gardens.
3rd February 2016, Old cemetery, by the Old Chapel
Female sparrowhawk spotted capturing and eating a feral pigeon. Unusually did not fly off whilst several people observed. In the last week sparrowhawks have been very active in both the cemetery and Bank Gardens.
27th January 2016, Horns Road
What you might see
in Stroud’s Local
The old cemetery is a key wildlife site and designated Local Nature Reserve.
On still summer nights you can sometimes see mysterious luminous spots glowing in the dark. Don’t worry – it’s not ghosts but glow-worms. The females have luminous organs under their tails to attract males in the dark.
Rufous grasshoppers are one of the more unusual insects found here. They’re amazing creatures that can jump up to 20 times the length of their body. You can often see these brown grasshoppers in late summer, basking in the sunshine on the sunny grassy slopes around the chapel.
Badgers and rabbits live in the cemetery and there are holes and uneven ground as a result of their digging and burrowing. It’s best to stay on the paths as many of the holes are hidden by the dense undergrowth.
As well as glow-worms and badgers, there are other night-time visitors to the cemetery – bats. They fly over the cemetery, hunting for insects around the trees and graves. Three different kinds of bat are found here: brown long-eared, noctule and the more common pipistrelle bats.
On summer days the paths and gravestones are used by warmth-loving lizards and adders that like to sunbathe on the sunny surfaces. Adders may bite if disturbed.
The grassy areas are full of colourful wildflowers typical of the Cotswolds. There are blue harebells, pink cranes’ bills and ox-eye daisies as well as several different kinds of orchids. In spring the woodland is full of primroses and bluebells, visited by woodpigeons, jackdaws and woodpeckers.
Large patches of yellow-flowered kidney vetch are found on the steep slopes below the chapel. The flower heads are closely packed together and the leaves are hairy. In the past they were used to stop wounds bleeding. It’s the food plant of the Small Blue – Britain’s smallest butterfly.
Sheets of creamy white ox-eye daisies cover some of the grassy slopes of the cemetery in summer. The large flowers are the food of a very rare kind of insect – the oxeye lace bug. It’s only known at a handful of sites in Gloucestershire.
The cemetery is also home to an amazing variety of lichens, with 86 different kinds recorded. The gravel chippings in some of the kerbed graves are the best habitat as they are made from many types of stone including marble, limestone, granite and sandstone, each type offering a different surface for lichens to grow upon.
A leaflet detailing the history and wildlife of the cemetery is available here.