Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Good weekend weather and walks....30th June & 1st July 2012

After the deluge on Thursday the weekend weather was good...well compared to the previous week it was! Wassell Grove Fisheries early on Saturday morning was to be my first walk of the weekend. A small flock of Linnets in a paddock were a delight to see especially the stunning males, Swallows and Swifts were also present over the paddock hawking for insects. Other highlight birds were Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Wren, Blue & Great Tit, Heron and a hovering Kestrel, though not hovering close enough for a pic! I also saw my first of the year Meadow Brown butterfly. The undoubted highlight was on my return walk, I stood for a while watching the flight manoeuvres of the Swallows, such amazing birds! After a short while I noticed that a swallow was perched on a fence by some sheds, it was a youngster and was being fed by it's parents. I cautiously made my way closer and as it happens the youngster and adults were not at all perturbed by my presence. I took the chance to take a few images and a video. This was my closest and best encounter with these lovely birds.

A walk today along the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal starting at Stourton. The first sighting (though distant)was of two young Kestrels perched on Stourton Castle. One was on a parapet and the other was on top of brick stacks, both of the Kestrels had a Magpie close by which were obviously pestering the Kestrels. Later on the return walk an adult Kestrel was seen flying over the adjacent field, presumably in search of tea for the youngsters! Not a lot of birds were seen but were heard, these included Song Thrush, Blackcap, Nuthatch, Greenfinch and Green Woodpecker. A family of Goldcrests were seen and what a delight they were too! There were two (possibly three) youngsters that were being fed regularly by there parents! Super little birds and good to see that they have overcome this summers bad weather and raised a family. Not much else seen on the birding front but a few insects were interesting finds. I saw my first Speckled Wood of the year and also my first Banded Demoiselle. A Dragonfly hawked over the water but did not settle for any chance of an ID. It was an enjoyable walk and always nice to see the colourful barges of which there were plenty of today.

I believe I have the correct ID's for the following Flora and Insects but would appreciate correction if they are not correct.

Giant Hogweed


Hedge Woundwort

Hoverfly..Volucella pellucens

Longhorn Beetle

Longhorn Moth

Banded Demoiselle

An Alligator in the canal?!!!!!


  1. Two very colourful up-dates Pam,nice to have a bit of dry weather wasn't it!
    I love the reflective bridge photo.
    Your Swallow video is delightful,very obliging of it to turn around eh!

  2. Hi Pam, I was too slow in commenting on your last post but very pleased that things seem to be progressing well with the caterpillars.

    You certainly made the most of your weekend with two very rewarding walks. What a delightful Swallow encounter, lovely piece of video!

    On the second walk you saw some interesting insects etc. I think your one misidentification might have been the Alligator...or maybe not ;-)

    Lovely photos throughout!

  3. Thanks Ruth! Yes it was good to have two relatively dry days! The Swallows were a joy to watch, it was nice to stand back and enjoy the peace and quiet around me and see such elegant birds in flight!

  4. Hi Jan, I am really pleased that so many caterpillars have so far survived. I suppose they stand more chance of surviving in the box then outdoors being washed away.

    I think you may be right with the ID of the Alligator, I should perhaps have ID'd it as a Branch (sp). :-)
    Thanks for your kind comments!