Another month disappears!

Of course I knew it was a new month today because it is my lovely grandson’s birthday, happy birthday Daniel!   img_1380-daniel

 

So that can only mean that October has come to an end and it is time for a monthly review. It has been a mixed month with some manic times then more relaxed days, this past week being the more relaxed variety!

What October has been brilliant for was bird life ticks, I have had five and I am pretty chuffed with that. Add to that some cracking birds that I have seen for only the second time and I reckon October has been excellent.

First new bird was an Eastern-crowned warbler which we journeyed up to Bempton for, a place always worth a visit and thankfully we both saw this very active little bird. No picture of the bird but a few from the site!

I saw my first Dusky warbler at Cromer, followed by another a couple of weeks later at Titchwell!  We narrowly missed seeing two on one day as there had been one at Cley where we popped for lunch. Happily whilst there word came of a Barred warbler that was down Beach road in and out of a bush (along with many other little birds) so we were off.

It wasn’t long after our return from Yorkshire that we were headed back again! This time for a bird that was a first for mainland Britain, mind you it started a trend as several others have been since!!! We found a lovely place to stay and drove up so we would be there in Easington for first light and hopefully the bird, a Siberian accentor would have stayed overnight too! Happily it was in no rush to leave so we joined what I call the ‘queue for a view’ for a good though very brief sight before being moved along to allow others a view too. We returned later that day and what a difference a few hours had made!

This time we got to see it much better and get some fairly decent pictures too!   Not the most exotic looking bird perhaps but one I was delighted to see!

Rather pleased to see this Redstart too just along from the star bird, it showed off quite well so as not to go unoticed!

img_0826-redstart

Between our two visits to the accentor we went to Sammy’s point and it is so hard to explain quite how smashing it was. There were birds everywhere! Flying in from the sea, sitting in bushes, feeding in the mud or in the fields it was just ‘Magical’! I was chuffed to find some Ring ouzels and to get some shots which was not so easy earlier in the year.  We saw hundreds of Goldcrests  and probably hundreds of Robins too. There were Chiffchaffs, Wheatears, Reed buntings and to our delight we saw, for the first time, Woodcock in flight.

We couldn’t be so close to Spurn and not go there so off we went. This obliging Shorelark was another bird that we had seen early in the year but not been able to photograph.

Back to Sammy’s point for another lovely walk amongst the many birds we saw this flycatcher. First though was of course that it is a Pied flycatcher but there has been some discussion as it has some hints of a Collared flycatcher. I think the answer is we will never know, but it was a sweet bird whichever it is!!!

We stayed on an extra night and on the way home went to Donna Nook another place I had often heard of but never visited. Here I saw another bird that I had only seen once before, a few years previously and what a little beauty, a Red-flanked bluetail.

Jumping to later in the month now and Alice and Matilda joined us for a brilliant birding day beginning at Burnham Overy Dunes. Ian and I had been on the Sunday to see the Isabelline Wheatear and we returned the next day with the girls to try to see it again and also a Desert wheatear. On the Sunday we ploughed through the mud but were rewards with views of my very first Isabelline wheatear.

The following day, with the girls we took a different, less muddy and much more pleasant route to the dunes! The bird had moved so the walk was longer but not once did either of the girls complain, they were brilliant! A very brief flight view was all some of us got of that bird but thankfully we all saw the Desert wheatear, not for long but clearly.

On our way back along the dunes, we timed it perfectly, a Radde’s warbler had just been spotted, first sighting for a few hours! We joined the group and again all saw it, another life tick for me and the girls! Next stop Titchwell for lunch and if we had any energy left a stroll. This was where we saw our second Dusky warbler before walking down to the sea.

Golden plovers on the fresh marsh, Sanderlings on the shore plenty of other waders on the way. It really was a lovely day out, it couldn’t fail really, life ticks and grandchildren along to enjoy it!

Well we had a lazy week following that although November has thrown us an unexpected treat, hopefully there will be things to report next time I blog!

Still butterflies visiting the garden and a several Red admirals have been feeding on the dahlias this week  (note to self, plant some more of them!)  img_1334-red-admiral

I have decided to only print out the bird list this month as it has definitely been the main highlight of the month. I will give the number of the other things first:

Moths (macro and micro) … 310

Insects                                       …85

Dragon/damselflies              … 17

Butterflies                                …24

Mamals                                      …25

Reptile/amphibians                …5 (could do better!!!)

Birds                                           …253   (*26* Life ticks)

So far my total of winged and otherwise creatures for the year is 719 I have bypassed all but three of the guesses made before the year began, who will be closest? Could still be thelast one that I have passed or one I havent yet reached.

Bird List end October

  1. Mute Swan
  2. Bewick Swan
  3. Whooper Swan
  4. Pink-footed Goose
  5. White-fronted Goose
  6. Greylag Goose
  7. Canada Goose
  8. Barnacle Goose
  9. Brent Goose
  10. Egyptian Goose
  11. Common Shelduck
  12. Muscovy duck
  13. Mandarin Duck
  14. Eurasian Wigeon
  15. Gadwall
  16. Eurasian Teal
  17. Mallard
  18. Pintail
  19. Garganey
  20. Shoveler
  21. Red-crested Pochard
  22. Common Pochard
  23. Ferruginous Duck *
  24. Tufted duck
  25. Greater Scaup
  26. Common Eider
  27. Long-tailed Duck
  28. Common Scoter
  29. Velvet Scoter
  30. Goldeneye
  31. Smew
  32. Hooded merganser *
  33. Red-breasted Merganser
  34. Red Grouse
  35. Black Grouse
  36. Goosander
  37. Red-legged Partridge
  38. Grey Partridge
  39. Common Pheasant
  40. Golden Pheasant
  41. Little Grebe
  42. Great Crested Grebe
  43. Red-necked Grebe *
  44. Slavonian Grebe
  45. Black-necked Grebe
  46. Fulmar
  47. Manx Shearwater
  48. Gannet
  49. Cormorant
  50. Shag
  51. Bittern
  52. Cattle Egret
  53. Little Egret
  54. Great Egret
  55. Grey Heron
  56. White Stork
  57. Glossy Ibis
  58. Spoonbill
  59. Red Kite
  60. White-tailed Eagle
  61. Marsh Harrier
  62. Hen Harrier
  63. Pallid Harrier *
  64. Goshawk *
  65. Eurasian Sparrowhawk
  66. Common Buzzard
  67. Rough-legged Buzzard
  68. Golden Eagle
  69. Osprey
  70. Kestrel
  71. Merlin
  72. Hobby
  73. Peregrine Falcon
  74. Water Rail
  75. Corn Crake
  76. Moorhen
  77. Western purple swamphen*
  78. Coot
  79. Common Crane
  80. Great bustard *
  81. Oystercatcher
  82. Black-winged Stilt
  83. Pied Avocet
  84. Stone-curlew
  85. Little ringed Plover
  86. Ringed Plover
  87. Dotterel
  88. European Golden Plover
  89. Grey Plover
  90. Lapwing
  91. Great Knot*
  92. Knot
  93. Sanderling
  94. Little Stint
  95. Temminck’s Stint
  96. Pectoral Sandpiper
  97. Curlew Sandpiper
  98. Purple Sandpiper
  99. Dunlin
  100. Broad-billed Sandpiper *
  101. Ruff
  102. Jack Snipe
  103. Common Snipe
  104. Long-billed Dowitcher *
  105. Woodcock
  106. Black-tailed Godwit
  107. Bar-tailed Godwit
  108. Whimbrel
  109. Curlew
  110. Spotted Redshank
  111. Common Redshank
  112. Common Greenshank
  113. Lesser Yellowlegs
  114. Green Sandpiper
  115. Wood Sandpiper
  116. Common Sandpiper
  117. Ruddy Turnstone
  118. Grey Phalarope
  119. Arctic Skua
  120. Mediterranean Gull
  121. Little Gull
  122. Black-headed Gull
  123. Common Gull
  124. Lesser Black-backed Gull
  125. Herring Gull
  126. Iceland Gull
  127. Glaucous Gull *
  128. Great Black-backed Gull
  129. Kittiwake
  130. Caspian Tern *
  131. Sandwich Tern
  132. Common Tern
  133. Arctic Tern
  134. Common Guillemot
  135. Razorbill
  136. Black Guillemot
  137. Puffin
  138. Rock Pigeon
  139. Stock Pigeon
  140. Wood Pigeon
  141. Collared Dove
  142. Turtle Dove
  143. Rose-ringed Parakeet *
  144. Cuckoo
  145. Barn Owl
  146. Tawny Owl
  147. Short-eared Owl
  148. Common Swift
  149. Common Kingfisher
  150. European Bee-eater *
  151. Hoopoe
  152. Wryneck
  153. Green Woodpecker
  154. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  155. Lesser Spotted Woodpecker
  156. Wood Lark
  157. Sky Lark
  158. Shorelark (horned lark)
  159. Sand Martin
  160. Swallow
  161. Red-rumped Swallow *
  162. House Martin
  163. Tree Pipit
  164. Meadow Pipit
  165. Rock Pipit
  166. Water Pipit
  167. Yellow Wagtail (Grey-headed)
  168. Grey Wagtail
  169. Pied Wagtail
  170. Dipper
  171. Wren
  172. Dunnock
  173. Siberian Accentor*
  174. Robin
  175. Common Nightingale *
  176. Bluethroat*
  177. Red-flanked Bluetail
  178. Black Redstart
  179. Common Redstart
  180. Whinchat
  181. Stonechat
  182. Isabelline Wheatear*
  183. Desert Wheatear
  184. Wheatear
  185. Ring Ouzel
  186. Blackbird
  187. Fieldfare
  188. Song Thrush
  189. Redwing
  190. Mistle Thrush
  191. Cetti’s Warbler
  192. Grasshopper Warbler
  193. Sedge Warbler
  194. Eurasian Reed Warbler
  195. Great Reed Warbler*
  196. Dartford Warbler
  197. Barred Warbler
  198. Lesser Whitethroat
  199. Whitethroat
  200. Blackcap
  201. Yellow-browed Warbler
  202. Eastern Crowned Warbler *
  203. Radde’s Warbler*
  204. Dusky Warbler*
  205. Wood Warbler
  206. Common Chiffchaff
  207. Willow Warbler
  208. Goldcrest
  209. Firecrest
  210. Spotted Flycatcher
  211. Red-breasted Flycatcher
  212. Pied Flycatcher
  213. Bearded Tit
  214. Long-tailed Tit
  215. Marsh Tit
  216. Willow Tit
  217. Crested Tit *
  218. Coal Tit
  219. Blue Tit
  220. Great Tit
  221. Nuthatch
  222. Treecreeper
  223. Penduline tit *
  224. Red-backed Shrike
  225. Great Grey Shrike
  226. Jay
  227. Magpie
  228. Jackdaw
  229. Rook
  230. Crow
  231. Hooded Crow
  232. Common Raven
  233. Starling
  234. House Sparrow
  235. Tree Sparrow
  236. Chaffinch
  237. Brambling
  238. Serin *
  239. Greenfinch
  240. Goldfinch
  241. Siskin
  242. Linnet
  243. Twite
  244. Lesser Redpoll
  245. Mealy Redpoll
  246. Bullfinch
  247. Hawfinch
  248. Lapland Longspur
  249. Snow Bunting
  250. Yellowhammer
  251. Cirl Bunting
  252. Reed Bunting
  253. Corn Bunting

Only two months left of our big year and still no Little owl!!! We have had them in the garden in the past and they are always in our village but this year they are hiding from me!!!

Two Gentlemen of East Dereham!

After the excitement of our Yorkshire/Lincolnshire trip it was time to calm down!

Monday was due to be bright and sunny and there had been a few things reported up on the coast over the weekend that we still need. So with the washing done over night there was just time to hang it out quickly before we were heading for Cley. A Cattle egret had been reported first thing and although there were some in Norfolk early in the year we didn’t connect with any of them. Sadly there was no word or sight of it at Cley although it had been seen briefly just along the coast.

cley-2

Nothing very exciting to see there but at least the cows have moved on!

cleyWe had looked in Wells wood last week for an Olive-backed pipit (OBP) and warblers but no luck. The OBP was still being reported so we spent the morning looking but again no luck! There were plenty of people there searching but only one person saw it whilst we were there. See it doesn’t always go our way but it is still fun! The woods are just behind the beach so I had to take a quick peek!

wells

There was plenty of fungi but very little bird life there at all, we did see several Goldcrests though.

Time to make the decision of where to go to eat our late lunch which we had brought with us. We had a few ideas but decided to go to Blakeney as that was one of the places that the Cattle egret had been spotted earlier. So a quick lunch then out for a walk not expecting a great deal but it was a beautiful day so for sure the walk would be enjoyable.

As I walked along the sea wall I was checking out all the egrets that I could see, no luck all Little ones. But then what were the chaps ahead of me studying in a field? As I approached and asked, hooray, it was the Cattle egret.

Here comes the blog title; the two fellas that were there asked if I would like to see through one of their scopes. Well of course I would but I was too short to reach ! No hesitation, they adjusted the height and I was very soon looking at the Cattle egret. Within moments it took to flight and was away, who knows how far it went? Not me! In conversation I learnt that the gentlemen came from East Dereham and if anyone knows them, please pass on my thanks!

No photo of the bird I’m afraid but this is where it was, living up to it’s name, in with the cows.  blakenyTime to return home but very pleased to have got a year tick especially as it brings our bird tally to 250! I am, too say the least happy with that and don’t forget, the years hasn’t ended yet!

At a time when the birds are picking up again the moths are slowing down, in fact the other night we got none at all, that doesn’t happen often!

Here are a couple of recent sightings though. A November moth made a slightly early appearance, and this Juniper carpet was a new one to us!

Yellow line quakers seem to come in two varieties, one with spots and one without!

The bug is a Dock bug, it was a tad camera shy, every time I tried to take a head on shot it turned tale and scarpered!

Today has been mostly wet so I have been busy sorting some pictures, what tomorrow will bring I know not, but when I do you can be assured I will be telling you!

 

 

 

Autumn approaches

So another month has been and indeed gone! I have always had a fondness for October so maybe it will bring good things, who knows I may even be lucky enough to see the very rare Little owl! How I have managed to go nine months without seeing one is a mystery, but I have. Other years I have seen them regularly in our village, we even saw one in a tree in our garden once but not this year.

September has been a good month but nothing major to report on the sightings front. One event that I can’t let go unmentioned is that our grandson, Daniel, began school and what a good time he is having!

img_9200-daniel

We have only added two birds, Pectoral sandpiper and yellow-browed warbler but we have still enjoyed the hunt!

An early event in the month was my first sighting of a frog (I know, where have I been up to now?) closely followed by a toad, literally on our doorstep!

Insects have risen the most this month, largely because there hasn’t been much else to catch my eye! I have had a favourite though, this beautiful beetle. img_9552-rainbow-leaf-beetle

I had it miss-identified originally but it turns out to actually be a Rosemary-leaf beetle and is a bit of a thug, I’m glad I resisted the temptation to bring it home with me!!!

I have also learnt this month that a hoverfly isn’t simply a hoverfly there are very many different ones, here are a few I have seen in recent weeks.

We had a lovely visit with Alan and Judy and the weather was just about perfect, if anything it was a tad too hot! They arrived on an evening that had seen rain all day and left the day before the rain returned, but for there stay…not a drop.

Due to my back (I have moaned enough about that previously) my daily tally of steps on my Fitbit had sadly fallen, Alan and Judy’s visit got those steps up again. img_9513-us-at-castle-acre-priory

We also snuck a last minute visit in with Janice and Chris, an overnight stop with them at the very end of the month. That was mainly to check up on Chris as it had been his turn to miss-behave in the health department! We had a good time with them and were pleased to find Chris looking, though rather weary, not too far off his usual self.  Another reminder of our mortality but also another huge blessing that it had not been worse and we are all still here in more or less sound body and minds (I did say more or less!).

We spent several days in Bedfordshire on pet sitting duties which was very enjoyable. Sadly I forgot to take a picture of the bunnies but here is the rest of the gang.

We got out and about with several walks at RSPB The Lodge and also Danish Camp. We added Pygmy shrew to our mamal list which was a bonus and certainly saw plenty of sign that autumn is heading our way.

Ruth and Stu’s time away had gone well, it was centred around running a half-marthon in Euro Disney! I must be honest here, I feel we got the best end of the deal staying in their home looking after ‘their family’!!! roo

I mentioned a flower we saw growing and had wondered what it was.

img_0470-flowerThanks to both James and Christine for letting me know it is Himalayan Balsam which inspite of being an attractive plant is a pest! It spreads like wild fire mainly due to the fact that the seed heads explode and travel great distances.

We have continued to regularly see lots of dragonflies and a smaller number of damslelies too. I  think the one that pleased me most this month was the one that landed on Alan’s hat! We had seen lots of male banded demoisels but as far as I know this was the first female. I am sure I must have seen them but they are not so conspicuous as thier partners so I guess they simple eluded me.

img_9415-banded-demoiselle-fem

New moths have continued to appear but not in the numbers that we had last year which has been rather disappointing. I think it has been generally quieter year for them and not due to anything we have done differently. We have picked up some more micro moths this month and I suspect that is pretty much it for the year for them. I will pop a few pictures of some of the micros we have had this year, (not necessarily this month) mostly from our trap but some Peter has shared from his garden.

So another month gone and time to look at lists (or ignore them ) and see how the numbers have slowly grown. Most people that predicted my final tally have been knocked out as it now stands at 698 but there is still a fight on!

Bird List    244

  1. Mute Swan
  2. Bewick Swan
  3. Whooper Swan
  4. Pink-footed Goose
  5. White-fronted Goose
  6. Greylag Goose
  7. Canada Goose
  8. Barnacle Goose
  9. Brent Goose
  10. Egyptian Goose
  11. Common Shelduck
  12. Muscovy duck
  13. Mandarin Duck
  14. Eurasian Wigeon
  15. Gadwall
  16. Eurasian Teal
  17. Mallard
  18. Pintail
  19. Garganey
  20. Shoveler
  21. Red-crested Pochard
  22. Common Pochard
  23. Ferruginous Duck *
  24. Tufted duck
  25. Greater Scaup
  26. Common Eider
  27. Long-tailed Duck
  28. Common Scoter
  29. Velvet Scoter
  30. Goldeneye
  31. Smew
  32. Hooded merganser *
  33. Red-breasted Merganser
  34. Red Grouse
  35. Black Grouse
  36. Goosander
  37. Red-legged Partridge
  38. Grey Partridge
  39. Common Pheasant
  40. Golden Pheasant
  41. Little Grebe
  42. Great Crested Grebe
  43. Red-necked Grebe *
  44. Slavonian Grebe
  45. Black-necked Grebe
  46. Fulmar
  47. Manx Shearwater
  48. Gannet
  49. Cormorant
  50. Shag
  51. Bittern
  52. Little Egret
  53. Great Egret
  54. Grey Heron
  55. White Stork
  56. Glossy Ibis
  57. Spoonbill
  58. Red Kite
  59. White-tailed Eagle
  60. Marsh Harrier
  61. Hen Harrier
  62. Pallid Harrier *
  63. Goshawk *
  64. Eurasian Sparrowhawk
  65. Common Buzzard
  66. Rough-legged Buzzard
  67. Golden Eagle
  68. Osprey
  69. Kestrel
  70. Merlin
  71. Hobby
  72. Peregrine Falcon
  73. Water Rail
  74. Corn Crake
  75. Moorhen
  76. Western purple swamphen*
  77. Coot
  78. Common Crane
  79. Great bustard *
  80. Oystercatcher
  81. Black-winged Stilt
  82. Pied Avocet
  83. Stone-curlew
  84. Little ringed Plover
  85. Ringed Plover
  86. Dotterel
  87. European Golden Plover
  88. Grey Plover
  89. Lapwing
  90. Great Knot*
  91. Knot
  92. Sanderling
  93. Little Stint
  94. Temminck’s Stint
  95. Pectoral Sandpiper
  96. Curlew Sandpiper
  97. Purple Sandpiper
  98. Dunlin
  99. Broad-billed Sandpiper *
  100. Ruff
  101. Jack Snipe
  102. Common Snipe
  103. Long-billed Dowitcher *
  104. Woodcock
  105. Black-tailed Godwit
  106. Bar-tailed Godwit
  107. Whimbrel
  108. Curlew
  109. Spotted Redshank
  110. Common Redshank
  111. Common Greenshank
  112. Lesser Yellowlegs
  113. Green Sandpiper
  114. Wood Sandpiper
  115. Common Sandpiper
  116. Ruddy Turnstone
  117. Grey Phalarope
  118. Arctic Skua
  119. Mediterranean Gull
  120. Little Gull
  121. Black-headed Gull
  122. Common Gull
  123. Lesser Black-backed Gull
  124. Herring Gull
  125. Iceland Gull
  126. Glaucous Gull *
  127. Great Black-backed Gull
  128. Kittiwake
  129. Caspian Tern *
  130. Sandwich Tern
  131. Common Tern
  132. Arctic Tern
  133. Common Guillemot
  134. Razorbill
  135. Black Guillemot
  136. Puffin
  137. Rock Pigeon
  138. Stock Pigeon
  139. Wood Pigeon
  140. Collared Dove
  141. Turtle Dove
  142. Rose-ringed Parakeet *
  143. Cuckoo
  144. Barn Owl
  145. Tawny Owl
  146. Short-eared Owl
  147. Common Swift
  148. Common Kingfisher
  149. European Bee-eater *
  150. Hoopoe
  151. Wryneck
  152. Green Woodpecker
  153. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  154. Lesser Spotted Woodpecker
  155. Wood Lark
  156. Sky Lark
  157. Shore Lark (horned lark)
  158. Sand Martin
  159. Swallow
  160. Red-rumped Swallow *
  161. House Martin
  162. Tree Pipit
  163. Meadow Pipit
  164. Rock Pipit
  165. Water Pipit
  166. Yellow Wagtail (Grey-headed)
  167. Grey Wagtail
  168. Pied Wagtail
  169. Dipper
  170. Wren
  171. Dunnock
  172. Robin
  173. Common Nightingale *
  174. Bluethroat*
  175. Black Redstart
  176. Common Redstart
  177. Whinchat
  178. Stonechat
  179. Wheatear
  180. Ring Ouzel
  181. Blackbird
  182. Fieldfare
  183. Song Thrush
  184. Redwing
  185. Mistle Thrush
  186. Cetti’s Warbler
  187. Grasshopper Warbler
  188. Sedge Warbler
  189. Eurasian Reed Warbler
  190. Great Reed Warbler*
  191. Dartford Warbler
  192. Lesser Whitethroat
  193. Whitethroat
  194. Blackcap
  195. Yellow-browed Warbler
  196. Wood Warbler
  197. Common Chiffchaff
  198. Willow Warbler
  199. Goldcrest
  200. Firecrest
  201. Spotted Flycatcher
  202. Red-breasted Flycatcher
  203. Pied Flycatcher
  204. Bearded Tit
  205. Long-tailed Tit
  206. Marsh Tit
  207. Willow Tit
  208. Crested Tit *
  209. Coal Tit
  210. Blue Tit
  211. Great Tit
  212. Nuthatch
  213. Treecreeper
  214. Penduline tit *
  215. Red-backed Shrike
  216. Great Grey Shrike
  217. Jay
  218. Magpie
  219. Jackdaw
  220. Rook
  221. Crow
  222. Hooded Crow
  223. Common Raven
  224. Starling
  225. House Sparrow
  226. Tree Sparrow
  227. Chaffinch
  228. Brambling
  229. Serin *
  230. Greenfinch
  231. Goldfinch
  232. Siskin
  233. Linnet
  234. Twite
  235. Lesser Redpoll
  236. Mealy Redpoll
  237. Bullfinch
  238. Hawfinch
  239. Lapland Longspur
  240. Snow Bunting
  241. Yellowhammer
  242. Cirl Bunting
  243. Reed Bunting
  244. Corn Bunting

Dragon and damselflies  17

Dragon flies

Golden banded dragonfly

Keeled skimmer

Migrant hawker

Black-winged skimmer

Scarce chaser

Common darter

Broad-bodied chaser

Southern hawker

Brown hawker

Ruddy darter

 

Damselflies

Azure damselfly

Common blue damselfly

Large red damselfly

Small red damselfly

Blue-tailed damselfly

Banded demoiselle

Beautiful demoiselle

Insects and other bits and bobs! 84

  1. Common Wasp
  2. Ladybird 7 spot
  3. Ladybird harlequin
  4. Lacewing green
  5. Lacewing brown
  6. Bloody nosed beetle (Timarcha tenebricosa)
  7. Red tailed Bumble bee
  8. White tailed Bumble bee
  9. Honey bee
  10. Hornet
  11. Garden snail
  12. Slug
  13. Wood ants
  14. Scottish wood ants
  15. Mining bees
  16. Froghopper
  17. Hawthorn shieldbug
  18. Two banded longhorn beetle
  19. Poplar leaf beetle
  20. Woodlouse
  21. Earwig
  22. Earth worm
  23. Wolf spider
  24. Green dock beetle
  25. Green leafhopper
  26. Bee fly
  27. Green sawfly
  28. Dark bush-cricket
  29. Pantallon bee
  30. Bee-wolf
  31. Daddy-long-legs spider
  32. Ophion obscratus (wasp)
  33. Cock chaffer
  34. House spider
  35. Money spider
  36. Zebra spider
  37. Green fly
  38. Black fly
  39. Red spider mite
  40. Red ant
  41. Helophilus pendulus (Sun (hover) fly)
  42. Dasysyrphus albostriatus (hover fly)
  43. Sphaerophoria scripta ( long hoverfly)
  44. Eupeodes luniger (hoverfly)
  45. Common field grasshopper
  46. Meadow grasshopper
  47. Mottled grasshopper
  48. Centipede
  49. Millipede
  50. Harvestman (Dicranopalpus ramopus)
  51. Common sexton beetle (Nicrophorus vespilloides)
  52. Black sexton beetle (Nicrophorus humator)
  53. Common green shieldbug
  54. Buff tailed bumble bee
  55. Southern oak bush cricket
  56. Pond skaters
  57. Water boatmen
  58. Caddisfly
  59. Bradycellus verbasci (moth trap invader!)
  60. Common green grasshopper
  61. Sitona Lepidus (small beetle)
  62. Nowickia ferox (fly)
  63. Tachina grossa (bee-face fly!)
  64. Sargus flavipes-( Yellow-legged Centurion)
  65. Common Carder Bumblebee
  66. Garden spider
  67. Red-legged shieldbug (Pentatoma rufipes)
  68. Black Kneed Capsid (Blepharidopterus)
  69. Nigma walckenaeri (little green spider!)
  70. Ladybird 2 spot
  71. Birch shield bug
  72. Eupterx urticae (tiny nettle bug)
  73. Speckled bush-cricket
  74. Chrysolina cerealis ( Rainbow leaf beetle )
  75. Crane fly
  76. Box shield bug
  77. Grove snail
  78. Small black ant (Lasius niger)
  79. Large black ant (Formica fusca)
  80. Nemorilla floralis   (black and white fly)
  81. Devil’s coachhorse (Ocypus olens)
  82. Nursery spider (Pisaura mirabilis)
  83. Scorpian fly (Panorpa communis)
  84. Long-winged Conehead

Butterflies 24

Red admiral

Brimstone

Peacock

Small tortoiseshell

Speckled wood

Green-vein white

Orange tip

Small white

Holly blue

Small copper

Small heath

Dark green fritillary

Common blue

Large heath

Small pearl-bordered fritillary

Green hairstreak

Painted lady

Ringlet

Large skipper

Large white

Gatekeeper

Small skipper

Comma

Grayling

Mammal list   23

  1. Rabbit.
  2. Stoat
  3. Hare
  4. Grey squirrel
  5. Common seal
  6. Roe deer
  7. Red deer
  8. Muntjak deer
  9. Sperm whale
  10. Grey seal
  11. Otter
  12. Weasel
  13. Bank vole
  14. Fallow deer
  15. Red squirrel
  16. Pine marten
  17. Beaver
  18. Daubenton’s bat
  19. Common pipistrelle
  20. Common shrew
  21. Water vole
  22. Hedgehog
  23. Pygmy shrew

Reptiles & Amphibians 5 (not a lot but better than last month!)

  1. Grass snake
  2. Smooth newt
  3. Common frog
  4. Common toad
  5. Slow worm

Moths alphabetised  231

 

Angle shades

Barred sallow

Barred straw

Barred yellow

Beaded chestnut

Beautiful golden Y

Beautiful hook-tip

Black arches

Black rustic

Blackneck

Blair’s shoulder-knot

Blood-vein

Bordered beauty

Bordered pug

Broad-bordered yellow underwing

Bright-line brown-eye

Brimstone

Brindled beauty

Brindled pug

Brown rustic

Brown-line bright-eye

Brown-spot pinion

Brown-tail

Buff arches

Buff ermine

Buff tip

Burnished brass

Cabbage moth

Canary-shouldered thorn

Centre-barred sallow

Chestnut

Chinese character

Cinnabar

Clay

Clouded border

Clouded drab

Clouded silver

Clouded-bordered brindle

Coast dart

Common carpet

Common emerald

Common footman

Common marbled carpet

Common pug

Common Quaker

Common rustic

Common swift

Common wave

Common wainscot

Copper underwing

Coronet

Coxcomb prominent

Currant pug

Cypress pug

Dark arches

Dark-barred twin-spot carpet

Dark Spectacle

Dark spinach

Dark/grey dagger

Dewick’s plusia

Dingy footman

Dot moth

Dotted chestnut

Double square spot

Double-striped pug

Drinker

Dun-bar

Dusky brocade

Dusky sallow

Dusky thorn

Dwarf cream wave

Ear moth

Early grey

Early moth

Early thorn

Early toothed-stripe

Elephant hawkmoth

Emperor moth

Engrailed

Eyed hawkmoth

Fan-foot

Feathered gothic

Flame shoulder

Flounced rustic

Four-dotted footman

Foxglove pug

Frosted green

Frosted orange

Garden carpet

Garden tiger

Ghost moth

Great prominent

Green-brindled crescent

Green carpet

Green pug

Green silver-lines

Grey pine carpet

Heart and club

Heart and dart

Hebrew character

Herald

Hummingbird hawkmoth

Iron prominent

July highflyer

Knot-grass

Latticed heath

Large emerald

Large nutmeg

Large wainscot

Large yellow underwing

Least black arches

Least carpet

Least yellow underwing

Leopard moth

Lesser cream wave

Lesser broad-bordered yellow underwing

Lesser swallow prominent

Lesser yellow underwing

Light arches

Light brocade

Light emerald

Lilac beauty

Lime hawkmoth

Lime speck pug

Lobster moth

Lunar underwing

Lychnis

Maiden’s blush

Mallow

Map-winged swift

Marbled beauty

Marbled brown

Marbled minor

March moth

Marbled white spot

Miller (caterpillar)

Mottled beauty

Mottled pug

Mottled rustic

Mottled umber

Mouse moth

Muslin

Nutmeg

Nut-tree tussock

Oak beauty

Orange footman

Orange sallow

Orange Swift

Pale brindle beauty

Pale eggar

Pale mottled willow

Pale prominent

Pale tussock

Pale-shouldered brocade

Peach blossom

Pebble hook-tip

Peppered moth

Pine hawkmoth

Pink-barred sallow

Plain golden Y

Poplar grey

Poplar hawkmoth

Powdered Quaker

Purple bar

Red-line Quaker

Red twin-spot carpet

Riband wave

Rosy footman

Rosy rustic

Royal mantle

Ruby tiger

Rustic

Rustic shoulder-knot

Sallow

Scalloped oak

Scarce footman

Scorched wing

Setaceous Hebrew character

Shears

Short-cloaked moth

Shoulder stripe

Shoulder-striped wainscot

Shuttle-shaped dart

Silver Y

Silver-ground carpet

Single-dotted wave

Six-striped rustic

Slender brindle

Small angle shades

Small blood-vein

Small brindled beauty

Small dusty wave

Small fan-foot

Small fan-footed wave

Small Quaker

Small rivulet

Small square-spot

Small yellow wave

Smoky wainscot

Snout

Spectacle

Spinach

Spruce carpet

Square-spot rustic

Straw dot

Straw underwing

Streamer

Swallow prominent

Swallow-tailed moth

Tawny speckled pug

The flame

Treble bar

Treble lines

Triple-spotted pug

Turnip moth

Uncertain

V moth

V Pug

Vapourer

Varied coronet

Vestal

Vine’s rustic

Waved umber

Webb’s wainscot

White ermine

White satin moth

White-point

Willow beauty

Winter moth

Yellow-barred brindle

Yellow shell

Yellow-tail

Micro moths 70

  1. Apple leaf miner (Lyonetia clerkella)
  2. Ash-bark Knot-horn (Euzophera pinguis)
  3. Barred marble (Celypha striana)
  4. Beautiful china-mark ( Nymphula nitdulata )
  5. Bee moth ( Aphomia sociella)
  6. Bird-cherry ermine ( Yponomeuta evonymella )
  7. Bordered carl (Coptotriche marginea)
  8. Brown china-mark ( Elophila nymphaeata)
  9. Brown house moth   (Hofmannophila pseudospretella)
  10. Chequered grass veneer ( Catopria falsella )
  11. Codling moth (Cydia pomonella)
  12. Common drill ( Dichrorampha petiverella )
  13. Common grey (Scoparia ambiguallis)
  14. Common marble ( Celypha lacunana )
  15. Common nettle-tap (Anthophila fabriciana)
  16. Common plume ( Emmelina monodactyla)
  17. Cyclamen tortrix ( Clepsis spectrana )
  18. Dawn flat-body (Semioscopis steinkellneriana)
  19. Diamond- back moth   (Plutella xylostella)
  20. Dingy dowd (Blastobasis adustella)
  21. Dotted oak knot-horn ( Phycita roborella)
  22. Double striped tabby ( Hypsopygia glaucinalis )
  23. Elbow stripe grass-veneer (Agriphila geniculea)
  24. Elder pearl (Anania coronate)
  25. Fenland pearl (Anania perlucidalis)
  26. Florida pink scavenger (Anatrachyntis badia)
  27. Garden grass-veneer   (Chrysoteuchia culmella)
  28. Garden pebble (Evergestis forficalis)
  29. Garden rose tortrix ( Acleris variegana )
  30. Golden argent (Argyresthia goedartella)
  31. Gold triangle ( Hypsopygia costalis )
  32. Grass-veneer (Crambus pascuella)
  33. Horsechestnut leaf miner (Cameraria ohridella)
  34. Large fruit-tree tortrix ( Archips podana)
  35. Large Ivy Tortrix   (Lozotaenia forsterana)
  36. Large tabby ( Aglossa pinguinalis)
  37. Light brown apple moth (Epiphyas postvittana)
  38. Little grey (Eudonia lacustrara)
  39. London dowd ( Blastobasis lacticolella)
  40. Long-horned flat-body ( Carcina quercana )
  41. Many plumed moth (Aluctia hexadactyla)
  42. Maple slender (Caloptilia semifascia)
  43. Marbled orchard tortrix (Hedya nubiferana)
  44. March tubic (Diurnea fagella)
  45. Marbled piercer (Cydia splendana)
  46. Marsh dwarf (lachista alpinella)
  47. Meal moth (Pyralis farinalis)
  48. Mother of pearl ( Pleuroptya ruralis )
  49. Narrow winged grey ( Eudonia angustea)
  50. New oak slender ( Caloptilia robustella )
  51. Obscure agg. ( Oegoconia agg. )
  52. Ox-tongue conch ( Cochylis molliculana )
  53. Pale straw pearl ( Udea lutealis )
  54. Privet tortrix (Clepsis consimilana)
  55. Red-barred tortrix ( Ditula angustiorana )
  56. Ringed china-mark ( Parapoynx stratiotata )
  57. Rough-winged conch   (Phtheochroa rugosana)
  58. Rose tabby ( Endotricha flammealis )
  59. Rusty dot pearl (Udea ferugalis)
  60. Small grey ( Eudonia mercurella )
  61. Small magpie (Anania hortulata)
  62. Spindle ermine (Yponomeuta cagnaglla)
  63. Sulphur Tubic ( Esperia sulphurella)
  64. Triple-blotched bell (Notocelia trimaculana)
  65. White-bodied conch (Cochylis hypridella)
  66. White-faced tortix (Pandemis cinnamomeana)
  67. White-shouldered house moth ( Endrosis sarcitrella)
  68. White-headed Ermel (Paraswammerdamia alibicapitella)
  69. Yellow-faced bell (Notocella cynosbatella)
  70. Yellow-spot tortrix (Pseudargyotoza conwagana)

Why some of these lists insist of double spacing I really don’t know, it is most aggravating as it take up even more space than needed. I have tried retyping and all sorts but it makes no difference, sorry!

See you in October 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We met a Pygmy on a detour!

Where to go for a walk on Monday, that was the question. We thought about returning to the Lodge but we wanted to take Sprocket and we were rather restricted there. So I suggested we returned to Danish Camp and do one of the other walks from there, off we went. Just as we were approaching Ian remembered they were shut on Mondays…oops! Oh well plan B. We parked at The Dovecote which was just as convienient for the walk we had in mind.

Off we set along our chosen path when the rain began, not heavy but the sky looked threatening. So we turned back and with the rain stopping walked another pathway but keeping us near to the car should the skies open again.

We were heading back to the car when we stopped to look at a map of the site. I hadn’t realised there were ponds there and Ian said had we kept going along our first path we would have seen them. We could have walked between two lakes and then along by the river which leads to Danish Camp (no lunch there today!) so in a mad moment I suggested we did that walk anyway.img_0463-sign

Off we trekked and what a lovely time we three had, the rain kindly staying away. The lakes had been the appeal but in fact you hardly see them! It is obviously a place favoured by fishermen as at any gap in the shrubbery you could see umbrellas with fishing poles sticking out from them, it seemed safe to assume that fishermen were there too! We were amused by this blind that had been put presumably to help people look through at birds on the lake but sadly it was a tad overgrown!img_0465-blind

We saw, in the distance some Barnacle geese, when we were here earlier in the year there were loads on the then flooded fields. As we neared the water we saw geese in flight, not Barnacles but Greylags. When we could see through to the lake the geese had altered again, by then they were Canada Geese. Very changeable geese they have in Bedfordshire!!!

We saw quite a lot of these flowers on our walk and I had thought they were wild orchids. I have tried to look them up but my knowledge of wild flowers is less than that of insect so you will see I am hopeless! I couldn’t find them and the more I looked the more the leaves looked wrong for orchids, do you have any idea what they are?
The plant is Himalayan Balsam  (Thank you James and for fungus Ids)

At least I had no problem hitting my Fitbit step target! We arrived back at the car and it is definitely a walk I would enjoy doing again, I must remember next time we visit Roo and Stu.

Later that evening the wanders returned having sucessfully completed the inaugaral half marathon, in character dress,  at Euro Disney and had plenty of fun there too. Feeling very proud of the pair of them, they have come al long way this past two or three years. I think it is fair to say that pets and owners were all happy to be reunited although they did okay with the subs for a few days!roo

Tuesday morning and it was time for us to leave. Before coming away I had contacted Rosie, the person I was told moth trapped at The Lodge. My email had recieved the reply that she was out of the office till Monday so we thought that was the end of it. She did however reply on Monday saying they were trapping that night so we arranged to meet over there first thing.

It is a lovely setting although we did learn that the building has floodlights on it all night which migh have been part of the cause of hardly any moths being present, nothing new for us.

We headed off to walk one of the routes we had not yet done this visit, but first poopped into the hide where this woodpecker made a very brief appearance. img_0484-gsw

As we headed off we could hear the sound of chainsaws so assumed there was logging going on. We had a lovely walk and the weather brightened up as we went along.

When we were nearly back to the main path and therefore our car, a notice said we couldn’t go that way and to ‘find another path’. Now if you know the site well that may be easy but we didn’t! We could have turned round and retraced our steps but that would have involved a much longer walk than planned includeing trudging up a somewhat steep hill! Instead we decided to follow a sign to The Old heath and hope that led us back. It was a lovely walk and did lead us back but not back to the car! Instead we found oursleves at the end of the briddle path we had been on with Sprocket the other day, hey ho on we trekked.

Sharp eyed Ian ( good to have a nickname don’t you think?) spotted something move and thankfully directed my gaze to the right place. It was a Pygmy shrew, now you will just have to take my word for it, it is under this log! img_0510

I stood, camera pointed, hoping it would come out again. It did but of course not in the same place, it must have gone through a tunnel as it appeared again some way back from the log.

The only other time I remember seeing one was in our living room! One of our pesky cats had caught it, brought it in and it had escaped. It gave us the run around for a while but it was eventually caught and relaeased, apparently unharmed to run free again.

So although the detour added quite a bit to our walk we did get a tick for the year and a lovely sighting it was.

I am always drawn to taking pictures of fungi and I suppose I really should try to ID it one day but with one the RSPB have done it for me! The other one intrigued me as it looked like it had exploded from within this fallen Silver birch ( now identified as Birch polypore )

TIme for a quick coffee back at the shop/reception and a chance to suggest that when they close paths they might put a notice to that effect at the start of the trail!

A thankfully uneventful journey home and time to see how our garden fungus is doing. Coming on nicely don’t you think? I promised the girls I would leave it for them to see how big it might grow. img_0533-fungus-garden

All well at the house, the workmen have completted their task and left although as yet the scafolders haven’t returned to clear away. More leaves have fallen in our absence and strangly no one has mysteriously been round and weeded or cleared the garden, oh well a girl can dream can’t she?

 

Late summer visitors

I am sitting enjoying some late summer sunshine and what gorgeous days we have been enjoying. Before I tell you about some visitors that came to stay I would love tell you about last Thursday when Peter and family came to tea. I opened the door and was greeted by Alice and Matilda standing close to each other with cheery smiles upon their faces. As they separated I saw why, there was little Daniel in his school uniform, it was his first week in reception class.img_9200-daniel

All was going well, he was enjoying school and I am certain school will have been enjoying him…long may it last!

I skip now quickly past Friday, (most of which was spent power hosing the garden patio and stones) past Saturday (rain, rain and more rain) too much later Saturday evening when our visitors arrived. My brother and sister-in-law, Alan and Judy. Only time really for some quick catching up before we were all turning in for the night ready for what promised to be sunny Sunday.

The weather forecast did not lie, it was a beautiful day, hot and sunny all day. We had decided to go up to Cley-next-the-sea and we parked in the main car park.img_9283-us-on-east-bankWe walked to the East bank and right along it ending up at the sea. There was no shortage of butterflies, mostly white and Tortoiseshells, also pleanty of hoverflies.

The colours along the way were just beautiful and although there were not a great many birds what we saw we appreciated.

img_9311-colours-of-cley

Back to the visitors centre where we stopped for lunch out on the raised patio still enjoying the beautiful September weather. We decided to head to Blakeney next where we walked along the sea wall, a beautiful Wheatear dropped by.

Not sure what this little building was or is but it certainly is in a smashing location.

img_9347-blackney

By now the heat was telling us it was time to head off, not for home but to Janice and Chris’ for a very welcome BBQ, all in all an excellent day!

Monday morning and we were having a visit from the tree surgeons, as promised they arrived at 8 am and got straight on with the job. A couple of hours later and trees were down or lopped, logs where cut and they were off leaving us with the rest of the day free. Moths and the hot tub called so we were all getting on with what ever we chose. This Speckled bush-cricket was found not in but near to the moth trap.

After an early lunch we headed straight out to Lynford water and the arboretum. We saw butterflies. including this small copper butterfly, dragon and damselflies

and I was particularly pleased with this one that landed on Alan’s hat!

img_9415-banded-demoiselle-femA female demoisel, we have seen lots of the males this year but this was the first female we have been aware of. The real treat of the day was seeing a slow-worm, it was anything butslow as it slithered off the path just in front of us but no chance of a picture.

This morning we set off for Castle acre priory, the first time Alan and Judy had been there and it is fair to say they were impressed. It really is an excellent place, (looked after by English Heritage), there are still plenty of remains to explore.

Also lovely grounds which provide shelter for all sorts of wildlife, including this tortoishell butterfly almost hidden in the dry leaves and this Buzzard out in the open for all to see!

Having just recently started a very small herb garden I love to see the very established one at the priory. img_9543-piroryherb-garden

Whilst looking around it we found several interesting little creatures! These included several garden spiders, a Silver Y moth and a Speckled wood butterfly.

 

But I made my best find whilst looking at the Silver Y, deeper down in the lavender plant I found this little beauty!img_9552-rainbow-leaf-beetle

It is a Chrysolina Americana or a Rosemary leaf beetle which may be a little easy to pronounce and remember! It is about the size of a Ladybird and really is a stunner although I read that it is a pest!

Time to leave the priory and head home for lunch before saying goodbye to Judy. Other comitments mean she must head home but Alan is staying on for another couple of days to see how many more moths we can find him, he has had over 20 new ones so far since he arrived! If we are really fortunate we might even find some birds.img_9513-us-at-castle-acre-priory

When the heat of the day has passed we may head out for a stroll locally and see what is lurking in the churchyard, but for now it is time to realx with a refreshing drink!

 

Sun, mist and unusual waders!

Wednesday was hot, hot, hot!

We amused ourselves with moths and bugs found at home and this beautiful Painted lady spent the whole day enjoying the dahlias (in fact she returned today too).

Peter brought this handsome bug over, as I am sure you know it is a Box bug.

We had intended to go out later in the morning but the heat persuaded us that we would leave it till a little later. So after lunch we ventured out, our chosen destination was West Acre, thinking a lot of the time we would find shade in the trees.

We saw plenty of Speckled wood butterflies and also Small coppers (for some reason I didn’t photograph the coppers).

Once again we were fortunate to see a Kingfisher, in fact we saw two. Also some lovely dragonflies which I am still struggling to ID with certainty.

This juvenile Pied wagtail took advantage of a bathe to help cool down, it was about 28 degrees so I was a tad envious!

As we walked on, under the shelter of the trees, we met many grasshoppers and one frog. I am including the tree/berries pictures just to illustrate the sky really.

When we returned to the car it was showing the temperature as 34 degrees, of course once we moved it went down but not far!

The forecast for today was 28 degrees but up on the coast a more pleasant 22 degrees which sounded good to us. We had already decided to be at Cley NWT reserve for 9 am when they open up the moth traps. This was not only to be of interest to us but to Alan too on the last full day of his visit, (I think he will be sorting pictures for a fortnight with all these moths and bugs!) Our moth trap had been very quiet last night due to a clear night and a bright moon, we were hoping that Cley had been different.

With the temperature at a steady 17 degrees and a very heavy mist surrounding us it wasn’t quite what we were expecting. Sadly the reserve traps there were quiet too, but some people had brought along some interesting moths to share so we added a few to our number. We are determined to get along to Cley for the moth sessions again soon and hope some of the knowledge of others might rub off!

A quick coffee then out for a walk on the reserve where I hoped to see waders returning, well here are the Cley waders!

Not quite what we had hoped for, but none the less an enjoyable walk in spite of the heavy mist all around. We saw a few dragonflies including this Migrant hawker and this pair of Common darters.

We saw a good variety of hoverflies, hopefully I will be able to get ID on them all.img_9844-hoverflyimg_9855-hoverflyimg_9849-hoverflyimg_9831-hoverfly_edited-1

We had hoped to pop in to see Janice but that didn’t work out so he headed on to Titchwell where a Yellow-browed warbler had been reported. The mist went with us on our journey and Titchwell was similarly shrouded! It seemed one person had seen the warbler but that was all, no other sighting, so no luck there.

Better luck was had getting ourselves some tasty lunch to boost our energy levels ready for our next walk. We began with a walk around the Meadow trial, I was hoping for more dragonflies but not much joy there. Instead we had the beetle (ID to follow I hope) and I was pleased to get a picture of a water boatman.

Now remember the waders that Cley had to offer?  Well it was time to find Titchwell’s offering, seeing through the mist was the only problem! Dunlin, Redshank and Godwit also (not illustrated) sandpipers, avocet and through the thick mist we got sight of two Spoonbill, a year tick for Alan.

img_9918-titchwell-in-mistWe walked down to the beach and the sea seemed to be as far away as it could possibly be. Add to that the mist situation and we didn’t really see the sea at all!  img_9946-titchwellWe did find this little crab and later on the walk back down the path this snail.

Our day out ended and we set off for home and the usual very welcome cuppa!

A mixed night is forecast, clear till the early hours then it will cloud over so hopefully so moths will be attracted to our trap and maybe there will be more new ones for us all. We have really enjoyed having Alan and Judy visit and hope to see them again before long.

 

At last…I’ve seen a frog!

Well it took eight months and a day before I did but at last I have seen a frog or I should say four frogs!

It was on Thursday the first day of September, yes I had gone eight months and not seen a single frog or toad! The weather looked promising so a trip to the arboretum seemed a good idea, off we went and a little later we met up with Peter and the children.

We hadn’t been walking long when sharp-eyed Peter spotted a tiny little frog, a common frog,  walking in the grass. IMG_8907 Alice frog

Time for a picture then off he hopped again, but back to frogs later! We had a good walk around, Daniel made a quick stop to adjust his socks!IMG_8936 Daniel

By now the sun was shining and the insects were coming to life, first we watched the damsel and dragonflies. The arial displays they put on were brilliant but you will need to take my word for it as they are much to fast for me to photograph in action.

IMG_8975 Dragonfly

Bees of varying shades and sizes were busy along with hoverflies.

But wierdest of all were a couple of flies that we saw. The first one looked like a bee as it flew towards me but when it landed I could see my error. I managed two quick snaps and it was gone. It was in looking to find it again that we found the second strange fly, it is quite amazing what is out there if we look!  Thanks to Peter for identifying them later on, The first is Tachina grossa or I like to call it, Bee-faced-fly! The second is Nowickia ferox, sorry no pet name for that one.

We had brought lunch with us so it was time to find a picnic table, seems the Harlequin ladybirds had found them first! Two different looking Harlequins and the third picture is a Harlequin ladybird nymph.

While eating lunch Matilda found this little fly, pretty sure it is a  Yellow-legged Centurion- Sargus flavipes

IMG_8945 fly

I must admit that I am not usually drawn to flies of any kind but this year I make an exception, but this fella I would be pleased to see on any walk. A Common-green grasshopper, looks like something from prehistoric times don’t you think?

It was nearing time to go back home but a visit to ‘the face tree’ is always a must.

A bonus was waiting by the tree, more frogs! Not tree frogs (now that would have been amazing!) but they were keen to climb.IMG_9009 Frog

So that was Thursday, Friday we stayed home but we did some bug hunting in the garden. We found several little critters including this little green spider (Nigma walckenaeri).IMG_9080 Nigma walckenaeri

Also Peter shared a moth from his catch, a new one for all of us, Webb’s wainscot. IMG_9036 fenn's wainscott

So September has got off to a fine start and the weather forecast looks good for next week so hopefully some good trips out ahead…watch this space. Who knows we might even see a toad!!!

 

In an English Country Garden

As I am enjoying it so much I am beginning to think that taking a year out to explore nature should become an annual event!!!

The past few days have been largely spent in English country gardens starting in our own on Saturday when family were visiting. We went bug hunting and were delighted to find several that we hadn’t yet listed plus one lovely bonus. Peter lifted an old log to see what was lurking and we were surprised to find this little fella!IMG_8689 Smooth newt

A smooth or common newt, what a treat. It was especially good as it sat still and gave all of us, old and young time to have a good look at it. More logs were lifted and more critters found including millipede and centipede. Also a caterpillar had been lurking for a day or so, the best suggestion is that it is a Miller moth.

Hoverflies were busy too, these ones were deffinitly drawn to purple, dahlias and roses but each time the purple ones.

We arranged to spend a couple of days with my sister beginning on Sunday as it was to be their village garden party. Calamity struck on Saturday as Janice took a flying leap and ended up in A & E with two broken ribs…ouch! The decision was made that we would still be welcome to visit and it meant we could fill in for her at the garden party. So Sunday afternoon found me sitting at a table with a large jar filled with sweets taking people’s guesses as to how many there were! I met some lovely little children who were very keen to win, as it happened an adult did! The garden party was held in their Norfolk village, in the grounds of  ‘The big house’ and very beautiful it is too. Peter, Lynn and family came to join in the fun and support the cause. When I was talking to the house owner, Peter joined us and being bolder than me, asked if I could moth trap there one night. Having explained what was involved he kindly and without hesitation said we could. It was arranged to do it that night as they had some young visitors staying that might enjoy seeing the catch in the morning.

So in the morning we were joined by Arthur, Florence, Harry, Magnus (all delightful children) and parents to see what we could find. The number of moths was disappointing (to us) but at least there was some variety. I suspect this fella and his three friends may have had a moth breakfast snack before we got to it! I had no idea how noisy Guineafowl are, my goodness I wouldn’t like my neightbours to keep any!

I was pleased to see a Poplar hawkmoth which I knew would impress young eyes (older ones too of course). It was good to be able to show the contrast in shapes, sizes, and colour as we had the lovely yellow Brimstone moth, Setaceous Hebrew Character and other varieties.

No pictures of them but there were several Large yellow underwings which I am sorry to say are not a favourite of mine. When they open their wings they are beautiful but when they walk they scuttle and remind me of cockroaches!

The Coxcomb prominent was a hit and as one of the children said, “It looks like a bit of wood” my favourite of the morning was the Maiden’s blush.

It was a real joy to be able to introduce people to a different side of moths and I hope it might spur them on to a bit of an interest, I also hope to get a chance to moth again in that  rather large English Country garden one day or I should say night.

Back to spend the rest of the day with Janice (ouch) and Chris and later Peter and family came to visit. Bless the children they all came in rather gingerly having been warned not to rush and hug Janice!

I had several wanders around thier lovely English country garden and found that bees like it every bit as much as I do. I am not sure how they fly once they are covered in pollen but they do.

Peter and Lynn found this, as yet unidentified bug, it looks like a grasshopper but didn’t behave like one, any ideas? Later we got the hose out to try to encourage frogs to come out of hiding, they didn’t oblige but we all enjoyed the rainbow effects created. Foolishly when taking these pictures my camera was still set on macro but I hadn’t realised.IMG_8795 bug

That night we put the trap out and popped out to it a couple of times in the evening and there was plenty of activity. Sadly in the morning it was almost empty so we will never know what we missed. I think next time we try there I will position the trap in a more accessible part of the garden and maybe take moths out during the evening, worth a try I think.

We spent another lovely day with J & C, Janice is coping well with her ribs and Chris is taking care of her beautifully. We satyed for a BBQ lunch with some of their friends that we haven’t seen for well over ten years and it was a smashing time. Time to think about heading home but not before we stoped at yet another garden.

I find birdwatchers by and large to be a friendly, helpful bunch and since mothing I find the same to be true of them. One such person is David (a birder and a moth man!) and he had found a Cypress pug, only the fourth for Norfolk. He had kindly invited people to drop in to see it and as it was more or less on our route home we did just that. A bad picture I’m afraid but it is a record shot for me to have. Next a peek at David’s garden to see where he moths so that is four English Country Gardens!IMG_8818 Cypress pug

Home and time to get ready for the arrival of September, I wonder what that will bring.Having chosen the title for this blog I felt the need to listen to the song of the same name, it speaks of flowers, bugs, birds and it finally reminds us to, not forget the Robin, so I didn’t, although this one looks rather worn.IMG_8801 robinMy advice to one and all is, when you get the chance get out in an English Country Garden, big or small they can be a real joy but…don’t follow my sister by going flying with a bang…get well soon Janice!

Where did August go?

Now I know people say that time goes faster as you get older but it also goes fast when you are having fun so that is my excuse. August really has raced by, maybe because during the school holidays we have had more family visits and when Alice, Matilda and Daniel are around time just races by as I love it and them so much!

It has been a quiet month for birds but still we have had a few good ticks, but insects have picked up quite a bit especially moths. Here are pictures of a few that dropped in!

August began with a day out with Ian, Alice and Matilda spent at Minsmere and to be honest  was one of the best days of the month. We got a life tick which is also a tick for the U K a Purple swamphen so that is hard to beat and after that the girls helped us seek out butterflies by the sea. Grayling butterfly was a new one for me and the sheer volume of Common blue ones was brilliant. Also a couple of rather different bees!

August has been hampered by my back but we still had trips out albeit less than usual. A trip the The green Britain centre was good although we failed to spot a Burnet that we had hoped for.

I missed out on Birdfair but on the plus side Ian returned with gifts!!! Even whilst being at home we had a visit from a Blackcap and several new moths, some new for the year whilst other were entirely new for us.

A day out in hot sunshine came later in the month when we got three bird ticks along with butterflies and moths. Now I honestly didn’t realise that butterflies (and moths) migrated until this year and I certainly didn’t expect to see them fly in off the sea but I did! A Clouded yellow butterfly flew in and had the decency to land and pause to be photographed, now that is my kind of butterfly! Also Wryneck, Arctic Skua and Red-backed shrike all on one day!

August ended with a weekend away enjoying English Country gardens as talked about in the previous blog, so I will just repeat a single picture.IMG_8689 Smooth newt

Now as this is a monthly round up it is list time beginning with birds:

List end August

  1. Mute Swan
  2. Bewick Swan
  3. Whooper Swan
  4. Pink-footed Goose
  5. White-fronted Goose
  6. Greylag Goose
  7. Canada Goose
  8. Barnacle Goose
  9. Brent Goose
  10. Egyptian Goose
  11. Common Shelduck
  12. Muscovy duck
  13. Mandarin Duck
  14. Eurasian Wigeon
  15. Gadwall
  16. Eurasian Teal
  17. Mallard
  18. Pintail
  19. Garganey
  20. Shoveler
  21. Red-crested Pochard
  22. Common Pochard
  23. Ferruginous Duck *
  24. Tufted duck
  25. Greater Scaup
  26. Common Eider
  27. Long-tailed Duck
  28. Common Scoter
  29. Velvet Scoter
  30. Goldeneye
  31. Smew
  32. Hooded merganser *
  33. Red-breasted Merganser
  34. Red Grouse
  35. Black Grouse
  36. Goosander
  37. Red-legged Partridge
  38. Grey Partridge
  39. Common Pheasant
  40. Golden Pheasant
  41. Little Grebe
  42. Great Crested Grebe
  43. Red-necked Grebe *
  44. Slavonian Grebe
  45. Black-necked Grebe
  46. Fulmar
  47. Manx Shearwater
  48. Gannet
  49. Cormorant
  50. Shag
  51. Bittern
  52. Little Egret
  53. Great Egret
  54. Grey Heron
  55. White Stork
  56. Glossy Ibis
  57. Spoonbill
  58. Red Kite
  59. White-tailed Eagle
  60. Marsh Harrier
  61. Hen Harrier
  62. Pallid Harrier *
  63. Goshawk *
  64. Eurasian Sparrowhawk
  65. Common Buzzard
  66. Rough-legged Buzzard
  67. Golden Eagle
  68. Osprey
  69. Kestrel
  70. Merlin
  71. Hobby
  72. Peregrine Falcon
  73. Water Rail
  74. Corn Crake
  75. Moorhen
  76. Western purple swamphen*
  77. Coot
  78. Common Crane
  79. Great bustard *
  80. Oystercatcher
  81. Black-winged Stilt
  82. Pied Avocet
  83. Stone-curlew
  84. Little ringed Plover
  85. Ringed Plover
  86. Dotterel
  87. European Golden Plover
  88. Grey Plover
  89. Lapwing
  90. Great Knot*
  91. Knot
  92. Sanderling
  93. Little Stint
  94. Temminck’s Stint
  95. Curlew Sandpiper
  96. Purple Sandpiper
  97. Dunlin
  98. Broad-billed Sandpiper *
  99. Ruff
  100. Jack Snipe
  101. Common Snipe
  102. Long-billed Dowitcher *
  103. Woodcock
  104. Black-tailed Godwit
  105. Bar-tailed Godwit
  106. Whimbrel
  107. Curlew
  108. Spotted Redshank
  109. Common Redshank
  110. Common Greenshank
  111. Lesser Yellowlegs
  112. Green Sandpiper
  113. Wood Sandpiper
  114. Common Sandpiper
  115. Ruddy Turnstone
  116. Grey Phalarope
  117. Arctic Skua
  118. Mediterranean Gull
  119. Little Gull
  120. Black-headed Gull
  121. Common Gull
  122. Lesser Black-backed Gull
  123. Herring Gull
  124. Iceland Gull
  125. Glaucous Gull *
  126. Great Black-backed Gull
  127. Kittiwake
  128. Caspian Tern *
  129. Sandwich Tern
  130. Common Tern
  131. Arctic Tern
  132. Common Guillemot
  133. Razorbill
  134. Black Guillemot
  135. Puffin
  136. Rock Pigeon
  137. Stock Pigeon
  138. Wood Pigeon
  139. Collared Dove
  140. Turtle Dove
  141. Rose-ringed Parakeet *
  142. Cuckoo
  143. Barn Owl
  144. Tawny Owl
  145. Short-eared Owl
  146. Common Swift
  147. Common Kingfisher
  148. European Bee-eater *
  149. Hoopoe
  150. Wryneck
  151. Green Woodpecker
  152. Great Spotted Woodpecker
  153. Lesser Spotted Woodpecker
  154. Wood Lark
  155. Sky Lark
  156. Shore Lark (horned lark)
  157. Sand Martin
  158. Swallow
  159. Red-rumped Swallow *
  160. House Martin
  161. Tree Pipit
  162. Meadow Pipit
  163. Rock Pipit
  164. Water Pipit
  165. Yellow Wagtail (Grey-headed)
  166. Grey Wagtail
  167. Pied Wagtail
  168. Dipper
  169. Wren
  170. Dunnock
  171. Robin
  172. Common Nightingale *
  173. Bluethroat*
  174. Black Redstart
  175. Common Redstart
  176. Whinchat
  177. Stonechat
  178. Wheatear
  179. Ring Ouzel
  180. Blackbird
  181. Fieldfare
  182. Song Thrush
  183. Redwing
  184. Mistle Thrush
  185. Cetti’s Warbler
  186. Grasshopper Warbler
  187. Sedge Warbler
  188. Eurasian Reed Warbler
  189. Great Reed Warbler*
  190. Dartford Warbler
  191. Lesser Whitethroat
  192. Whitethroat
  193. Blackcap
  194. Wood Warbler
  195. Common Chiffchaff
  196. Willow Warbler
  197. Goldcrest
  198. Firecrest
  199. Spotted Flycatcher
  200. Red-breasted Flycatcher
  201. Pied Flycatcher
  202. Bearded Tit
  203. Long-tailed Tit
  204. Marsh Tit
  205. Willow Tit
  206. Crested Tit *
  207. Coal Tit
  208. Blue Tit
  209. Great Tit
  210. Nuthatch
  211. Treecreeper
  212. Penduline tit *
  213. Red-backed Shrike
  214. Great Grey Shrike
  215. Jay
  216. Magpie
  217. Jackdaw
  218. Rook
  219. Crow
  220. Hooded Crow
  221. Common Raven
  222. Starling
  223. House Sparrow
  224. Tree Sparrow
  225. Chaffinch
  226. Brambling
  227. Serin *
  228. Greenfinch
  229. Goldfinch
  230. Siskin
  231. Linnet
  232. Twite
  233. Lesser Redpoll
  234. Mealy Redpoll
  235. Bullfinch
  236. Hawfinch
  237. Lapland Longspur
  238. Snow Bunting
  239. Yellowhammer
  240. Cirl Bunting
  241. Reed Bunting
  242. Corn Bunting

 

 

Moths (Macros)  alphabetised    213 

Angle shades

Barred straw

Barred yellow

Beautiful golden Y

Beautiful hook-tip

Black arches

Blackneck

Blood-vein

Bordered beauty

Bordered pug

Bright-line brown-eye

Brimstone

Brindled beauty

Brindled pug

Brown rustic

Brown-line bright-eye

Brown-tail

Buff arches

Buff ermine

Buff tip

Burnished brass

Cabbage moth

Canary-shouldered thorn

Chinese character

Cinnabar

Clay

Clouded border

Clouded drab

Clouded silver

Clouded-bordered brindle

Coast dart

Common carpet

Common emerald

Common footman

Common marbled carpet

Common pug

Common Quaker

Common rustic

Common swift

Common wave

Common wainscot

Copper underwing

Coronet

Coxcomb prominent

Currant pug

Cypress pug

Dark arches

Dark-barred twin-spot carpet

Dark Spectacle

Dark spinach

Dark/grey dagger

Dingy footman

Dot moth

Dotted chestnut

Double square spot

Double-striped pug

Drinker

Dun-bar

Dusky brocade

Dusky sallow

Dusky thorn

Dwarf cream wave

Early grey

Early moth

Early thorn

Early toothed-stripe

Elephant hawkmoth

Emperor moth

Engrailed

Eyed hawkmoth

Fan-foot

Flame shoulder

Flounced rustic

Four-dotted footman

Foxglove pug

Frosted green

Frosted orange

Garden carpet

Garden tiger

Ghost moth

Great prominent

Green carpet

Green pug

Green silver-lines

Grey pine carpet

Heart and club

Heart and dart

Hebrew character

Herald

Hummingbird hawkmoth

Iron prominent

July highflyer

Knot-grass

Latticed heath

Large emerald

Large nutmeg

Large yellow underwing

Least black arches

Least carpet

Least yellow underwing

Leopard moth

Lesser cream wave

Lesser broad-bordered yellow underwing

Lesser swallow prominent

Lesser yellow underwing

Light arches

Light brocade

Light emerald

Lilac beauty

Lime hawkmoth

Lobster moth

Lychnis

Maiden’s blush

Map-winged swift

Marbled beauty

Marbled brown

Marbled minor

March moth

Marbled white spot

Mottled beauty

Mottled pug

Mottled rustic

Mottled umber

Mouse moth

Muslin

Nutmeg

Nut-tree tussock

Oak beauty

Orange footman

Orange Swift

Pale brindle beauty

Pale eggar

Pale mottled willow

Pale prominent

Pale tussock

Pale-shouldered brocade

Peach blossom

Pebble hook-tip

Peppered moth

Pine hawkmoth

Plain golden Y

Poplar grey

Poplar hawkmoth

Powdered Quaker

Purple bar

Red twin-spot carpet

Riband wave

Rosy footman

Rosy rustic

Royal mantle

Ruby tiger

Rustic shoulder-knot

Scalloped oak

Scarce footman

Scorched wing

Setaceous Hebrew character

Shears

Short-cloaked moth

Shoulder stripe

Shoulder-striped wainscot

Shuttle-shaped dart

Silver Y

Silver-ground carpet

Single-dotted wave

Six-striped rustic

Slender brindle

Small angle shades

Small blood-vein

Small brindled beauty

Small dusty wave

Small fan-foot

Small fan-footed wave

Small Quaker

Small rivulet

Small square-spot

Small yellow wave

Smoky wainscot

Snout

Spectacle

Spinach

Spruce carpet

Square-spot rustic

Straw dot

Straw underwing

Streamer

Swallow prominent

Swallow-tailed moth

Tawny speckled pug

The flame

Treble bar

Treble lines

Triple-spotted pug

Uncertain

V moth

V Pug

Vapourer

Varied coronet

Vine’s rustic

Waved umber

White ermine

White satin moth

White-point

Willow beauty

Winter moth

Yellow-barred brindle

Yellow shell

Yellow-tail

Micro moths to end of August 2016     54

 

  1. Barred marble (Celypha striana)
  2. Beautiful china-mark ( Nymphula nitdulata )
  3. Bee moth ( Aphomia sociella)
  4. Bird-cherry ermine ( Yponomeuta evonymella )
  5. Brown china-mark ( Elophila nymphaeata)
  6. Brown house moth   (Hofmannophila pseudospretella)
  7. Chequered grass veneer ( Catopria falsella )
  8. Codling moth (Cydia pomonella)
  9. Common drill ( Dichrorampha petiverella )
  10. Common grey (Scoparia ambiguallis)
  11. Common marble ( Celypha lacunana )
  12. Common plume ( Emmelina monodactyla)
  13. Cyclamen tortrix ( Clepsis spectrana )
  14. Dawn flat-body (Semioscopis steinkellneriana)
  15. Diamond- back moth   (Plutella xylostella)
  16. Dingy dowd (Blastobasis adustella)
  17. Dotted oak knot-horn ( Phycita roborella)
  18. Double striped tabby ( Hypsopygia glaucinalis )
  19. Elbow stripe grass-veneer (Agriphila geniculea)
  20. Elder pearl (Anania coronate)
  21. Fenland pearl (Anania perlucidalis)
  22. Garden grass-veneer   (Chrysoteuchia culmella)
  23. Garden pebble (Evergestis forficalis)
  24. Garden rose tortrix ( Acleris variegana )
  25. Gold triangle ( Hypsopygia costalis )
  26. Grass-veneer (Crambus pascuella)
  27. Large fruit-tree tortrix ( Archips podana)
  28. Large Ivy Tortrix   (Lozotaenia forsterana)
  29. Large tabby ( Aglossa pinguinalis)
  30. Little grey (Eudonia lacustrara)
  31. London dowd ( Blastobasis lacticolella)
  32. Long-horned flat-body ( Carcina quercana )
  33. Many plumed moth (Aluctia hexadactyla)
  34. Marbled orchard tortrix (Hedya nubiferana)
  35. March tubic (Diurnea fagella)
  36. Marbled piercer (Cydia splendana)
  37. Meal moth (Pyralis farinalis)
  38. Mother of pearl ( Pleuroptya ruralis )
  39. Obscure agg. ( Oegoconia agg. )
  40. Pale straw pearl ( Udea lutealis )
  41. Privet tortrix (Clepsis consimilana)
  42. Red-barred tortrix ( Ditula angustiorana )
  43. Ringed china-mark ( Parapoynx stratiotata )
  44. Rough-winged conch   (Phtheochroa rugosana)
  45. Rose tabby ( Endotricha flammealis )
  46. Small grey ( Eudonia mercurella )
  47. Small magpie (Anania hortulata)
  48. Spindle ermine (Yponomeuta cagnaglla)
  49. Sulphur Tubic ( Esperia sulphurella)
  50. Triple-blotched bell (Notocelia trimaculana)
  51. White shouldered house moth ( Endrosis sarcitrella)
  52. White-headed Ermel (Paraswammerdamia alibicapitella)
  53. Yellow-faced bell (Notocella cynosbatella)
  54. Yellow-spot tortrix (Pseudargyotoza conwagana)Butterflies to the end of August      24

    Red admiral

    Brimstone

    Peacock

    Small tortoiseshell

    Speckled wood

    Green-vein white

    Orange tip

    Small white

    Holly blue

    Small copper

    Small heath

    Dark green fritillary

    Common blue

    Large heath

    Small pearl-bordered fritillary

    Green hairstreak

    Painted lady

    Ringlet

    Large skipper

    Large white

    Gatekeeper

    Small skipper

    Comma

    Grayling

    Mammal list      21

    1. Rabbit.
    2. Stoat
    3. Hare
    4. Grey squirrel
    5. Common seal
    6. Roe deer
    7. Red deer
    8. Muntjak deer
    9. Sperm whale
    10. Grey seal
    11. Otter
    12. Weasel
    13. Bank vole
    14. Fallow deer
    15. Red squirrel
    16. Pine marten
    17. Beaver
    18. Daubenton’s bat
    19. Common pipistrelle
    20. Water vole
    21. Hedgehog 

      Reptiles & Amphibians 2016      2

      1. Grass snake
      2. Smooth newt

     

    Insects and other bits and bobs!       50

           (Thank you to those that have helped with Ids in this group)

    1. Common Wasp
    2. Ladybird 7 spot
    3. Ladybird harlequin
    4. Lacewing green
    5. Lacewing brown
    6. Bloody nosed beetle
    7. Red tailed Bumble bee
    8. White tailed Bumble bee
    9. Honey bee
    10. Snail
    11. Slug
    12. Wood ants
    13. Scottish wood ants
    14. Mining bees
    15. Froghopper
    16. Hawthorn shieldbug
    17. two banded longhorn beetle
    18. Poplar leaf beetle
    19. Woodlouse
    20. Earwig
    21. Earth worm
    22. Wolf spider
    23. Green dock beetle
    24. Green leafhopper
    25. Bee fly
    26. Green sawfly
    27. Dark bush-cricket
    28. Pantallon bee
    29. Bee-wolf
    30. Daddy-long-legs spider
    31. Ophion obscratus (wasp)
    32. Cock chaffer
    33. House spider
    34. Money spider
    35. Zebra spider
    36. Green fly
    37. Black fly
    38. Helophilus pendulus (type of hover fly!)
    39. Common field grasshopper
    40. Meadow grasshopper
    41. Mottled grasshopper
    42. Centipede
    43. Millipede
    44. Harvestman
    45. Carrion beetle
    46. Common green shieldbug
    47. Buff tailed bumble bee
    48. Southern oak bush cricket
    49. Pond skaters
    50. Water boatmen

 That makes a total of 606 and I think I need to work on the reptile/amphibian group!!!

Once again thank you so much for oyur support and sticking with me, all comments VERY welcome.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Down but not out!

Things are not going accordingly to plan at the moment, if they were I would be checked into a  Rutland hotel in readiness for Birdfair tomorrow. Instead I am at home having waved Ian off! Nothing terrible must be read into that, it is simply that my back led me to think walking around all day in the bustle of Birdfair might not be wise but I was more than happy for Ian to go as I certainly didn’t want us both to miss out. I am trusting he will come back inspired and I have no doubt with several free pens!

Although I am left behind (sob,sob) I thought I would have a look through  some pictures I have taken at home this past week or so especially as we had a rather special apple thief yesterday, but more of her later.

It has been a fairly quiet week with moths due to a bright moon and lots of clear skies, not favourable for moth trapping but none the less we have had a few nice ones.

I have pain killers from the doctor but a much better tonic was a visit from Peter, Lynn and family at the weekend and Daniel came bearing a gift.IMG_8305 Daniel's tree

How sweet is that? It isn’t everyday that I am given a piece of original art I can tell you!

Alice spent some while on some ‘patio art’ and later Daniel had help from his Mum and Dad and sisters to dig for dinosaur bones!IMG_8308 art

A few days ago this young Robin was in the garden it seems to have gone now, hopefully it has flown off to get on with it’s life rather than being caught by something!

I was amused by a visiting pigeon, it seemed to have a similar approach to bathing as I do, get snuggled in, make yourself comfy and just relax, it sat there for ages! IMG_8279 pigeon

A couple of non moth visitors around the trap recently were this bee and a Daddy long legs spiders or as I like to call it, a Naomi Campbell spider, it legs went on and on!

Yesterday whilst making a coffee I noticed a different looking bird eating our apples on the tree. I say different because there have been many blackbirds tucking into them the past week or two ( I hope they leave us a few but I am not too optimistic!). Any way the first view I got of it was the tail and very light underneath the tail, it looked a bit like a flycatcher but unless we had a vegetarian one that seemed unlikely! I grabbed binoculars and a camera and took a couple of shots through the window.

I thought I would try my luck by opening the door but of course she flew, fortunately though she landed in another tree in the open, not for long but long enough!

So it turned out to be a female blackcap not a first for the garden but possibly only the second or third so we were pleased. I often wonder what birds we miss in the garden, the occasional, brief visitors that go unseen as it was only luck that I spotted her. I often dream of a rarity flying in and what I would do, who would I call first? Would I let all and sundry into the garden to view it? The answer to the first question is easy, the second would take a bit more thought, but as nothing has flown in I needn’t worry tonight!!!

Well the moth light has come on so I wonder what tonight will bring, should be a bit cloudier so there more be more. As I popped into the garden to take this snap all the local Jackdaws seem to be saying goodnight to each other! IMG_8311

It is most unusual for me to be home alone but to mark the occasion I have decided that some fruit tea made in my favourite pot will be just right later as I chose a film to watch in bed. I hope Birdfair goes well, I hope Ian finds someone to use my ticket! If you are going, find your way to the LensCoat stall, they make great stuff and you can say hi to Peter while you are there.  I am optimistic that by this time next week I will be back to normal and we can get out and about again!IMG_8312