Wednesday, 23 April 2014

I Got Stung - Elvis Presley

Not wishing to sound too melodramatic but, this may be the Last Live Post for the next few days as there are a number of events about to take place of which a couple will undoubtedly change my way life. These have been looming for a while now and so provision has been made to supplement these pages with a series of photos from the Estonian Archive - a country and people I grew to Love a few years ago. Some of the changes will be revealed as and when they happen - we will continue to run the Moth Traps.
That was also the case last night even though a forecast of heavy rain had been issued, but strategically placing one of the traps in the lee of the stable block proved to be a disaster. Unaware of the pitch of the roof and certainly not taking it into consideration, that trap turned into more of a swimming pool than anything else but even then there were a couple of additions to the Year List!
 New to the property
 MULLEIN
and new for the year
SHUTTLE-SHAPED DART
 IRON PROMINENT
 GREY PINE CARPET
 BRIMSTONE MOTH
KNOT GRASS

 and the almost pre-historic
EMMELINA MONODACTLA
otherwise.
Not a Queen this time just a
COMMON WASP
While many are apt to simply beat these hapless creatures with a
copy of the Sunday Times for me they are something of a favourite.
Until I get stung again of course!
A very attractive
MAYFLY
RED-TAILED BUMBLEBEE
We will continue running the traps during our absence.
GREATER STITCHWORT
A 'naturalised' garden escapee
HONESTY
RED CAMPION
GREY SQUIRREL'S
Dining Table
SYCAMORE
in bloom.
My thanks go once again to John Gifford for assistance in identifying
most of the plants above and continuing my 'learning curve'.
Yet another
COMMON TOAD
Another flying visit to Middlebere threw up
SPOONBILL
GREAT BLACK-BACKED GULL
up to a bit of nonsense.
MALLARD DUCKLINGS
REDSHANK
SWALLOW
now prospecting potential nest sites including the garage at Harbins.
Briefly to Ovens Hill where the
YELLOWHAMMER
seem to be neatly paired-up as are others.
Having been keeping that watchful eye on the fresh excavations
in one of the BEECH TREES at Longham Lakes,
today paid dividends as a pair of
NUTHATCH
continued to chisel away at holes which were originally started by a
Great Spotted Woodpecker and then seemingly abandoned.
We will continue to watch for any further progress.
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Monday, 21 April 2014

Cuckoo Cocoon - Genesis

Wrapped up in some powdered wool I guess I'm losing touch
Don't tell me this is dying, 'cause I ain't changed that much
The only sound is water drops, I wonder where the hell I am
Some kind of jam?
Cuckoo Cocoon have I come to, too soon for you?
A slight increase in temperature of the night air, brought with it a couple of new species to add to the Property Moth List.
LUNAR MARBLED BROWN
(unexpected) and
POWDERED QUAKER
(certainly overdue).
 plus another first return for 2014
 SPRUCE CARPET
 GREEN BOTTLE FLY
 HONEY BEE
complete with sacks of pollen.
 Also unexpected, at such close quarters anyway, was this female
GOLDCREST
which was hanging around the Electric Dustbin
sited close to the redundant chicken shack.
It's CPA (closest point of approach)
was the extension to the power cable
 which supplies the trap!
We rarely, if ever, publish photographs of birds we don't see
but last week a visit was paid to
 BESTWALL, Wareham
 where a 'pair' of
BLACK-WINGED STILT
had been cavorting for a couple of days. As stated, I was a day too
late to see them but feel that this is such an
elegant and charming bird species
that a couple of images from the archive were in order. The plan had been to publish them the following day but they were lost in the mists of time, only to be re-discovered this morning. Another Bank Holiday so once again a day for sticking close to home included another wander to the north end of the property mainly to check the Lesser Spotted Woodpecker. No sign unfortunately, but if they are sitting (on eggs) then they will be very low profile - we will return at a later date. Along the way
this 'stalk' with white tips looked interesting
especially the white bits which as yet have not been identified.
Any ideas? - Please let us know!
GOLDFINCH
and what is thought to be the same
WHEATEAR
as when Dave Foot paid a visit is still down by the small natural pool.
MARSH MARIGOLD
PEACOCK BUTTERFLY
Then I 'cracked' as the lure of the New forest and a potential Goshawk got the better of me. It was still early in the day so little traffic on the way out and while the midday diners were fairly numerous there was little by way of hold-ups. Good job I did make the journey as there was an unexpected avian sight never before seen in my 'birding' career, and one to behold.
Taking up position alone at this traditional Goshawk View Point,
the day had become warm but as can be seen from the photo there
was an element of low cloud and mist to contend with.
There is little or no chance to photograph these powerful Raptors here so the big camera was left in the car, much to my chagrin as it turned out, as this was when the
 Hepatic female CUCKOO turned up.
Perching in a tree some 70 yards away there was no knowing instantly what it was but a few things buzzed through my head. The bird stayed there for a full 2 minutes affording excellent 'scope views but having to rely on Wiki once more for an image. In addition there was a single Goshawk that showed itself, but like a migrant bird in transit rather than the usual here thermalling and/or displaying.
Hepatic definition - of, relating to, or resembling the liver, which was the colour of this bird.
Another GREAT day and good to get out again after the almost continuous
heavy rain and cold north-easterly wind of yesterday.
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