I found time for an hours sky watching yesterday evening, and in some bright but windy conditions I at last recorded my first HOBBY (65) for the month :-), not much else though, a couple of LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS, and both KESTREL and SPARROWHAWK were the highlight.
This morning it was a dull and wet walk to work, but it had dried up for my afternoon patch visit, and although it remained mostly cloudy, it felt much warmer, as the wind had dropped out.
The warmer conditions meant a walk around the Tree Nursery was in order, to try and record some butterflies, the most numerous of which were the Small Skippers, with Meadow Browns not far behind, a few Large Skippers were also seen, and one or two Small Whites, and just one Small Tortoiseshell, it's a bit disappointing not to find any Common Blues, Small Coppers or Brown Argus.
Not much was recorded in the way of birds, the WHITETHROAT sang lustily for the entire hour I was in Tree Nursery, a GREEN WOODPECKER called from somewhere in the shrubs, and the usual DUNNOCKS, CHAFFINCH, SONGTHRUSH and BLACKBIRD were toing and froing with food for their young. Above both SWIFTS and SWALLOWS were making the most of the avian insects that were brought out by the warmer weather.
I also had a look around the Greenhouse Complex grounds, where a LESSER WHITETHROAT was still singing, as well as another Common Whitethroat. A family of BLACKCAPS were mingling with Dunnocks, Chaffinch, Blackbirds and BLUE TITS amongst a large bramble thicket. Kestrel and Sparrowhawk were seen going over with prey items, and a HERRING GULL floated southwards towards the gathering rain clouds, which deposited their now unwelcome rain at 5 : 30, making for a wet evening.
The Hobby seen last evening makes this the joint 3rd most productive June, along with 2009, which is two species behind the 2008 total and 3 behind the record June tally set last year. I might yet get a Tawny Owl, or maybe a Mandarin Duck on the lakes, but it's hard to see anything else cropping up, but you never know!
Photo's today are of insects, the first is yet another Small Skipper
and below is the Small tortoiseshell