Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Red-necked Phalarope....20/06/2010

I hadn't planned on doing any more birdwatching/walking today....that is until I read that a Red-necked Phalarope had been reported at the Flashes, Upton Warren! Well what does one do...go for it! A chance not to be missed as it would no doubt not be staying for a holiday! I checked my records and it was the 21st June that one (if not the same female?)had arrived at the Flashes last year! The super little wader was a real treat to see, not close views but much better than last year's views. I managed a few record photo's and have added a couple of the best so you can imagine what the rest were!! The photo of the Phalarope with the B H Gull gives an idea of the size of this pretty little wader!
Other highlights were Green Sandpiper, LRP's and chicks, Avocets and big chicks, Curlew and Oystercatcher. A Beautiful demoiselle and Broad-bodied Chaser were seen walking back along the boardwalk!

Hurcott Pools & Wood Nature Reserve....20/06/2010

It has been a while since I had a walk around this reserve. The pools were quiet albeit for a couple of Coots, Moorhen, 3 Great Crested Grebe and Mallards. Swallows and Martins flew low over the pools and also dipping into the water for a drink, a lovely sight to see in such a peaceful location. A Great Spotted Woodpecker was seen and heard as it drummed on an old tree trunk and apart from this bird a couple of Blue Tits and juvenile Robin were the only other woodland birds seen. A lovely heady scent of Honeysuckle suddenly filled the air whilst walking alongside the pool! It was growing in the vegetation and winding it's way up a couple of tree trunks. Summer has definately arrived when the Honeysuckle fragrance fills the air, wonderful! A Micro-Moth was found on the parapet of a bridge, I have ID'd it as Nemophora degeerella! What a mouthful, I am just pleased that I only have to write it and not pronounce!! The male has longest antennae of all British moths: female antennae much shorter. Usually in woodland. I was very pleased with this find!

On the meadow side of the reserve highlights were Song and Mistle Thrush, Chiffchaff (heard), Swifts, Jay, Buzzard, Kestrel and Saprrowhawk. Common Bird's-foot-trefoil looked a treat with the bright sunshine highlighting it's vivid yellow colour. Small tortoiseshell and Small skipper were the only butterflies seen.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

My Birthday Indulgence!....17/06/2010

It is my Birthday today and I am going to indulge myself with posting a few of my favourite random photo's that I have taken in my garden, walks, holidays and trips.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Rutland Water Nature reserve....30/05/2010

A short post on Rutland Water Nature Reserve visited on Sunday (30th may) in the hope of seeing an Osprey or two! The first Osprey viewed was flying and hovering over a lagoon whilst we were in a hide! This Osprey may have been one of a pair that is breeding on private land, it was a wonderful sight to see. The Single Osprey in my photo's attached is the Osprey I have just mentioned, so it has the honour of being my!
The nesting pair on the Manton Bay Lagoon were a real treat to see. The male perched on a tree close to the nest which had the female sitting on the eggs. He later flew to another lagoon and then came back clutching a fish and perched back in the tree for his fish tea! What a sight to see, lovely when it is for real and not on the!! the female left the nest for a short while, had a fly around and returned to the nest. I have since read that a chick hatched on each of the following 3 days! As of the 9th June I have read that the three chicks are thriving despite heavy rain.! Brill!!
A Ruddy Shelduck was pleasing to see, other highlights were Lapwings, Greylags, Shoveler, Gadwall and Great Crested Grebes!

It was a very windy day which was a pity as the Woodland birds kept their heads down and so did the Butterflies in exposed meadows. However in the more sheltered meadows Orange tip, Small Copper and Speckled Wood butterflies were seen. A new one for me was a Chimney Sweeper Moth. I have had another moth ID'd as a Small Yellow Underwing Panemeria tenebrata another new moth! I also found an insect which has been ID'd as being Cantharis,Cantharidae, a Soldier beetle. The meadows and hedgerows were looking splendid with Buttercups, Red Clover, Yellow Rattle, Ragged Robin, Pignut and Selfheal putting on a delightful show in the sunshine! The Buttercups that filled the meadows were particularly striking in the bright sunshine, recalling to mind the song 'Fields of Gold'! Damselflies were also seen in the sheltered areas of the reserve with Azure and Large red being the species seen.
Rutland Water Nature Reserve is a large reserve and a day is really not long enough time to visit all of it's 28 hides, especially when having to travel a distance to get there. However the hides are fairly close together over the main Lagoons and reservoir so good views are had from most hides of a good stretch of the waters.
All in all a great day at a great Reserve. A Winter visit will be a must!

Oh my word!!!!

Seeing this Great Tit with a whole peanut made me realise my mistake of putting out whole peanuts mixed in with the bird seed for the birds to eat from the balcony of the bungalow while on holiday in Scotland!!! I cringed when I thought of the feeding of chicks with whole peanuts! I reckon the birds have more sense though, well hopefully! The peanuts were to entice the Red Squirrels. I later bought monkey nuts for the Squirrels and ceased putting the loose nuts out for the birdies!