Saturday 3 August 2013

With a rash of showers being blown through on a brisk wind, the birding was not all it could of been for an August morning, the showers did end around midday, and the sunshine broke through, but the wind increased, giving me a hard time with the camera!

I thought the overnight thunder storm combined with the shower activity first thing may have brought a passage migrant to the Greenhouse Grounds, or the fields and paddocks of Migrant Alley, but a good search of each didn't turn up anything, in fact there was very little to be seen, even the ROOKS were down in numbers!

The CHIFFCHAFF, plus the family party of BLACKCAP and WHITETHROAT were still feeding up in the Greenhouse Grounds, and the young KESTRELS were practicing there flying skills over the area. Its interesting to watch the Chiffchaff, Blackcaps and Whitethroats continually checking the Elderberries, which are well late in ripening this year, normally this would be their staple diet for fattening up, I reckon it will be a week to ten days before any fruit ripens though.
Chiffchaff at the Greenhouse Grounds
I soon wandered over to the Scrubby Woods and lakes, but fared little better here, a few MOORHENS, a single MALLARD and a gaggle of GREYLAG and CANADA GEESE were on the water. In the woods the wind made it difficult to hear much at all, I was hoping for a Long tailed Tit for the months list, or maybe a Mistle Thrush, but neither were found, I did however find a couple of PHEASANTS (54) to add  :-)

The showers continued to rattle through every few minutes, but they were short lived and didn't really drop much rain, so I walked back over for a sky watch from my seat at Migrant Alley. I saw plenty of HERRING GULLS going over, as well as 4 BLACK HEADED GULLS and 2 LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS, the highlight though was seeing the PEREGRINE (55) powering its way low across the sheep pasture. I walked another circuit of the fields and paddocks, as at this time of year a Wheatear or Whinchat could drop in at any time, alas, just not today. As I scanned the fence lines there was a brood of 4 recently fledged SWALLOWS sat on one of them, a second family I suspect. Not much else was noted before I headed home for breakfast/dinner, just a few small parties of SWIFTS moving through.
Recently Fledged Swallow
Unfortunately I had my 300mm/extension tube set up on the camera by now
I removed the Tube, but the 300mm lens isn't as good as my 500mm lens
A short afternoon visit was had to migrant alley, again hoping that a 'chat' had dropped in, but no luck  :-)  I ended up chasing butterflies! Mind you, I did find a real nice Clouded Yellow, only the second this year, a painted Lady was a nice find too.
Painted Lady
I took loads of images of the Clouded Yellow Butterfly, so i'll keep some back for Monday's post, as Monday looks wet and not very camera friendly, here's a couple though.
I was glad of the 300mm/extension tube set up now!
Clouded Yellow, a superb Butterfly to get here :-)
Clouded Yellow


Greenie said...

Warren ,
Well done with the migrant butterflies . I must admit that with all the warm weather , more migrants would have shown up .
Only seen the odd ones this year .

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

You had any hummingbird hawks yet Warren?
Not heard of any this far north yet, might have expected some given the heat of the last week or so



Marc Heath said...

Wow Warren. A beauty, well done. Im goung on a Brimstone bash in the morning to see if i can improve my shots of the species.

Warren Baker said...

Ive kept my eye out for the HHM, but nothing yet :-(

Warren Baker said...

I would easily improve my shots of the Brimstones - as I haven't got any!

Warren Baker said...

Greenie, Perhaps they are all on their way :-)

Pete Woodruff said...

Yes....Some 'WOW' material here Warren, the Clouded Yellow being a 'Double WOW'.

By the way....I got the Painted Lady up here a few days ago, but still no CY.

Alan Pavey said...

Excellent shots Warren, not had Clouded Yellow yet this year nice one. I'm interested in the extension tube thing might have to look that up :-)

Anonymous said...

I love that Clouded Yellow Warren :-) I've never ever seen one let alone photographed one !