Sunday, 11 August 2013

It was mostly cloudy this morning as I set off for the Greenhouse Grounds and Migrant Alley at 06:15hrs, although I wasn't doing a full patch walk I expected to find between 40-45 species today, a total that I found I had very much overestimated!

Just 30, yes 30 species were found! Incredible, where on earth have all the birds gone, its never been so devoid of bird life here. Species such as Songthrush, Bullfinch, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, Treecreeper, Goldcrest, Linnet, Pheasant and even Great Tit were not seen, and of course there is still no sign of a Long Tailed Tit or Mistlethrush. No Geese were seen, no raptors were seen, no flyover Heron, Swift, Yellowhammer, Skylark, or House Martin and Just one Gull species, the HERRING GULL turned up!

So there is very little left to report for the four hours of effort I made this morning, there were a few BLACKCAPS in the Scrubby Woods and a couple of CHIFCHAFFS, another Blackcap and Chiffchaff were at the Greenhouse Grounds, where only 3 WHITETHROAT were seen.

Things have got to get better surely!

After lunch, early this afternoon, I decided to try and find some Butterflies over at the Greenhouse Grounds. It had warmed up and brightened up considerably, so I was optimistic of finding a few. My optimism was well founded, and I was surprised at what I found. Numbers of Common Blue, Brown Argus and Small Copper had increased to the highest levels this year, at least 6 Common Blue, 3 Brown Argus and 5 Small Coppers were flitting around, not large numbers I know, but considering I was in a tennis court sized piece of habitat, where no more than one of each of those species had been seen so far this year, it was quite something to watch. I also, of course saw a Clouded Yellow  :-)  Also there were Comma, Gatekeeper, Meadow Brown, Red Admiral, Peacock, Small Tortoiseshell, plus the Large and Small White. Just think, if a small area like that can hold so much, how much would one of the big empty fields of mown grass that can be found on my patch hold ?

Whilst photographing the flutters, I did find a few of this mornings missing bird species, but not many, HOUSE MARTINS were flying over regularly, a PHEASANT ran across Ashes Lane, and the adult male KESTREL was up hunting, also a couple of LINNET were seen, star bird of the day by a long shot though were the 3 CROSSBILLS that flew low over, my third record this month!

One other notable occurrence happened today, as I ate lunch, watching my garden feeders, a pair of Linnets dropped in to my elder tree, only the second Linnet record for my garden since I moved here in 1999. The number of species to visit my garden this year now stands at 38, the best year ever, and its only August  :-)

Back to the Flutters -
Common Blue
Common Blue
Common Blue
Common Blue Underwing
Brown Argus
Brown Argus
Brown Argus Underwing
Small Copper
Small Copper


Marc Heath said...

Well butterfly boy, you have some great shots there, keep them coming.

Alan Pavey said...

Nicw flutters Warren, Sissinghurst was almost bird free this morning :-(

Warren Baker said...

Cheers Marc,
More Butterflies than birds here at the moment!

Warren Baker said...

Who's got all the birds ?