Tuesday, 1 May 2012

After more heavy overnight rain, the first May day slowly improved as it went on and by the afternoon it was pleasantly sunny for my patch visit  :-)
Bluebells in the Wet Woods
Being the first day of the month, i'll mention all the birds recorded today, quite a good haul of 46 species :-) Leaving the house for work at 06:45hrs, the first birds to hit the May list were STARLING, ROBIN, COLLARED DOVE, JACKDAW, BLACKBIRD, CHAFFINCH, GREAT TIT, HOUSE SPARROW WOODPIGEON, WREN, SWALLOW, LINNET, GREENFINCH, GOLDFINCH and BLUE TIT, all seen in the 200 meter walk along Ashes Lane to the Greenhouse Complex, where PIED WAGTAIL and BLACKCAP were added along with flyovers from a MALLARD, a HERRING GULL and a SWIFT, my second of the spring  :-)

Crossing Migrant Alley, it slowed down a bit, on the sheep pasture and paddocks CARRION CROW, MAGPIE, ROOK, and a GREYLAG GOOSE were seen, but by now the rain was getting heavier, so I didn't hang about here. A brisk walk through the College Grounds only added GREEN WOODPECKER and CHIFFCHAFF.

On the walk back from work a few more of the commoner species were found, GOLDCREST in the College Grounds and the regular three raptor species were up hunting over Migrant Alley in the warm sunshine, those being SPARROWHAWK, BUZZARD and KESTREL, a SKYLARK was also up high singing, but the highlight was finding the first LESSER WHITETHROAT (90) of the year, it was found where they always turn up, in a patch of brambles surrounding an electricity sub station, just about the only place that has a decent growth of brambles left! This is the latest arrival on my patch for this species in the 11 springs of recording.
I found another immature Large Red Damselfly by one of my ponds whilst eating lunch
After a drink and something to eat, I went over to the lakes and Scrubby Woods, via the Tree Nursery, the latter had a COMMON WHITETHROAT singing and a PHEASANT calling, whilst overhead three Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel could all be seen in the same binocular view  :-) I heard a STOCK DOVE calling/singing and photographed a MISTLETHRUSH just before arriving at the Lakes.
Mistle Thrush. The best I could do, as I had fitted the smaller 300mm lens on the camera, anticipating some butterfly action
On the lakes only the COOTS and a MOORHENS were new for the day list, although a CANADA GOOSE flew low over. I checked the Canada Goose nest on the far bank, but the mother wasn't there, and I could see no young anywhere, have they hatched out and been hidden away somewhere ? In the Scrubby Woods, BULLFINCH, LONG TAILED TIT, and SONGTHRUSH were found, and so was the GARDEN WARBLER, which was singing loudly, the final bird for today was a JAY, I found one sitting tight on its nest  :-)
I was glad I fitted the smaller lens as there were quite few butterflies about, as I had expected  :-)
Orange Tip
Speckled Wood

Comma again
The surprise of the afternoon was finding a Slow worm as i walked back home across the Tree Nursery, only the second one found out on my patch in 11 years!


Rohrerbot said...

Cool find!!! A snake worm...don't think I've ever heard of this one before. Nice shots and glad it's cleared up a bit:)

Lancs and Lakes Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Super slow worm Warren - great find - don't get them round here for some reason :-(



Steve Ashton said...

Nice header photo Warren, how do you get them Orange tips to stop, super glue ???

Phil said...

Nice to see damselflies appearing Warren.
Lovely butterfly shots, especially the Orange Tip.

Marc Heath said...

Nice one with the Lesser Whitethroat and good to see the damselflies and butterflies arriving.

ShySongbird said...

Well I don't know! How come you have Spring there and here it is still Winter. We didn't have even a scrap of sunshine today :-( As for butterflies and Odonata what are they?

Well done on the Lesser Whitethroat. I know you've been itching for one :-)

Lovely sunny photos. The Bluebells look so pretty and well done with the Slow worm, I haven't seen one for a long time.

kirstallcreatures said...

What a lovely wander and a super start to May. I'd be more than pleased with those butterfly sightings, especially the Orange Tip & that Slow Worm is a good find.

Anonymous said...

You were lucky with the weather, Warren. Just like a dull & damp November day up here.