Sunday, 12 July 2009

I set off out at 06:00hrs this morning, on another 5 hour trek round my patch, the weather was abysmal for the first 2 hours, cool and windy with a light drizzle, but by 08:15hrs the cloud started to break, although it remained blustery.

Needless to say, in the conditions it was difficult to find the birds, nothing was singing, and very few were calling, I only had 15 species on the list after walking Ashes lane, the tree nursery and half way up the hedgerow leading to Migrant Alley, but it was here my luck changed. A glance up at the slate grey sky gave me a new species for the month - a LITTLE EGRET, its white plumage was striking against the grey background, what a great bird to record.

I plugged on in the drizzle and wind, picking up species slowly but surely, and by the time I had completed the first half of my walk I had a creditable total of 42 species, including the family of SPOTTED FLYCATCHERS, and the nice sight of 4 newly fledged GOLDCREST all huddled together on a branch. Also a smart looking HOBBY that went over, upsetting the SWALLOWS around the Greenhouses,

The second half of my walk around the small holding, wet woods and lake area yeilded another 7 species, 49 for the day, very good in the conditions.
As the sun had started to break through, I decided to walk over to Migrant Alley for a short skywatch, which proved very productive, as I added SPARROWHAWK, KESTREL and the first southerly bound SAND MARTINS of the year, taking the daylist to 52, now I didn't anticipate that at six o'clock this morning, a really good total! There were some notable absences from the list as well, Pheasant, Mistle Thrush, and Yellowhammer could all have turned up, and I am still awaiting the Garden warbler and Lesser Whitethroat this month!

July's species total of 58 now at least equals the lowest July total, always good to get past that mark.

I didn't even take the camera out this morning! So this afternoon I went over to the Thistle patch around the Greenhouse and took the following butterfly shots. Nothing really scarce, but it brightens up this page! Speaking of butterflies I had one fly through the garden this afternoon, it looked Black with white markings - A Marbled white, or White Admiral perhaps, I have not seen either of these species before, shame it didn't settle.

Above: Painted Lady. Below a Comma
Below a Small Tortoiseshell

Above: A Gatekeeper, and Below: A Large Skipper





8 comments:

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Another case of persistence paying off . Well done getting to 58 for the month .
I would say that your description of your visitor would lean towards White Admiral , as I think you would describe a Marbled White as white with black markings .
Especially if it was getting on for the size of a Red Admiral .

Steve said...

Well done for getting out Warren, I didn't bother. Well done on the Egret and some great butterfly pictures.

Jann E. said...

More great butterfly photos; nice! And it sounds like a very enjoyable walk as well.

Dean said...

All that plugging away is paying dividends. Keep at it, Warren.

Marcus Lawson said...

Hi Warren,
Agree with Greenie that it was most likely a White Admiral, they seem to be on the increase in our neck of the woods.

See you soon
Marcus

ShySongbird said...

Well done on the Little Egret and the Goldcrests must have been a lovely sight. Lovely photos of the butterflies.

NW Nature Nut said...

Thanks for posting all those butterflies! We just don't get that many here...so I can enjoy them through you. I like the Gatekeeper especially!

Mike - Fenphotography said...

Cracking set of shots, i'd be very happy with these.