'Bumbarrel' is an old name for the Long-tailed Tit, everyone's favourite garden bird. And the reason they're called that is for the shape of their nest. It's almost spherical, with a little hole at the front, and made from a special weave of moss, lichen, spiders' webs and feathers.
Spent a few hours today at Warley Place Nature Reserve near Brentwood. My first very first visit here and wow, did I enjoy it.
Warley Place, once a very famous Edwardian garden belonging
to Ellen Willmott, is now maintained as a nature reserve by Essex Wildlife
Although the house itself has long since gone, a walk round
the paths reveals tantalising glimpses of what the estate once comprised. There
are exotic trees, remains of cold frames, greenhouses, reservoirs, a terrace
and the conservatory that was part of the original building. Although there is
colour all year round, by far the best time to visit is in the spring, when
snowdrops, crocuses, daffodils, bluebells follow and overlap and vie with each
other in splendour.
There are two bird hides, a bird feeding station and the display of snowdrops and crocuses is breathtaking, the birds weren't bad either!