On a warm but mainly cloudy afternoon I'm standing on the car park bridge over the river Wandle in Morden Hall Park, watching a shoal of sizeable chub nosing into the current. Swimming alongside them are two very large sandy coloured barbel, rather portly fish compared with the slim streamlined chub.

A  bright orange comma butterfly patrols along the stream while a few banded demoiselle damselflies rest on overhanging vegetation. Moving along the river, two small white butterflies sip nectar from bramble flowers and I'm surprised to see some blackberries are already ripe, so early in the season.

Two large buddleia bushes play host to several bumble bees imbibing nectar from such a rich nectar source. Then as I move onto the boardwalk I hear, emanating from the reeds, a continuous chuckling sound of chanting reed warblers, somewhat similar to a skylark's song but much lower pitched although the warblers very rarely show themselves.

Suddenly, a handsome male reed bunting flies up from the reeds to alight at the apex of a large oak, quickly followed by his much duller mate who resembles a female house sparrow (pictured). 

A flock of thirty goldfinches flies from tree to tree uttering their rather canary- like tinkling song. A wren sounds agitated and scolding; a chiffchaff sings his own name; a nuthatch pipes up and through it all a blackbird sings. Another comma butterfly perches on a reed stem near a bright green and brown scarce male short-winged bush cricket, his hair-like antennae almost three times the length of his body, and a large skipper butterfly whizzes past.

So many sightings and sounds within a short time in a rich wildlife oasis.