The warm sunshine beckoned this afternoon (19th) so I packed my gear and set off for the Fisheries. Common Whitethroat songs were regularly heard along with a Chiffchaff! Swallows and a few Martins and Swifts flew overhead enjoying the abundance of insects that were out today! Speckled Wood and Peacock were the only butterflies seen this afternoon, the Speckled Wood looked rather raggety. I watched at a distance as Chiffchaff, Whitethroat, Blackcap (f), Blue and Great Tits searched for food for their young, the Great Tit brood I would imagine will soon fledge as it seems an age ago since I watched the pair gathering nesting material. Goldfinch, Greenfinch and a Kestrel were also seen briefly, the Kestrel flew overhead towards the adjacent Golf Course carrying it's small prey in it's talons! Small insects were plentiful and a challenge to photograph, I enjoy the challenge but do not get too close just in case their is a sting in the tail.lol! A rabbit was encountered on the walk back to my car and a Horse trotted over to the paddock fence to say hello!
A short visit was paid to the Moors, Upton Warren this evening (20th). Bucket loads of Swifts flew low over the pools, a lovely sight to see! A Cuckoo called almost continually but not seen. Great-Crested Grebes, Tufted Duck, Common Terns etc etc were on and off the water. Spiders in the vegetation caught my eye this evening, seemingly hundreds of them. The spider in the photo added is a species of the Tetragnathidae family and the spiderlings are Garden Orb-web, Araneus diadematus! The Soldier Beetle is Cantharis sp, possibly C. rustica and the Caterpillars if not eaten will be Small Tortoiseshell Butterflies. They have been kindly ID'd for me along with the Moth as I can assure anyone reading this blog that these insects are out of my league.lol!! On the way back to the carpark a Song Thrush was singing beautifully atop a tree as the sun was setting, then it flew into the hedgerow. Whilst watching the Song Thrush my Daughter suddenly stated a few words ****** which made me turn around and lo and behold a Badger emerged from the reeds, spotted us and legged it across the path just 3-4 feet away from us and into the hedgerow!! What a sight and a startle! That is the closest I have ever been to a 'live' Badger, a wonderful few seconds! Over at the Sailing Centre a Fox was spotted but no Bats to be seen this evening.
Four-legged creatures stole the show on both of my walks! I am struggling on two legs at present as I have aggravated a tendon in my knee and have a head cold! Talking of leagues it is 'Survival Sunday' for the bottom teams of the Premiership today and what a nail-biting finish to the season it turned into! 'Survival Weekend' for me...I will recover and be out and about hopefully sometime in the week ahead if this persistent gusty wind ever dies down.
View from Fisheries.
Micropterix calthella and the stripey one is Cocksfoot Moth Glyphipterix simpliciella.
Epiblema sp Tortix Moth
A singing Common Whitethroat
A puzzled looking Pheasant
My new four-legged friend!
Moors, Upton Warren.
Small Tortoiseshell Caterpillars
Spiderlings of Garden Orb-web, Araneus diadematus
Soldier beetle, Cantharis sp, possibly C. rustica.
A singing at sunset Song Thrush.