Friday, 5 June 2020

One in the Hand is worth 2 in the Bush - Part I

During the Depression we once again cling to the 
ARCHIVE
to at least bring our discerning and valued
READERSHIP
a little succour! 
Bird Ringing and other ways of monitoring Animal life are vital to
note trends in all species, but as far as our avian friends are concerned there is an added
bonus should you be one of the lucky or calculationg few.
Watching the process, mainly at the
Portland Bird Observatory (PBO),
and being a life-long mariner has brought with it that valued experience of viewing 
Birds in the Hand.
Here are 3 or 4 dozen, both 'common' and exremely 'rare' which will cove 2 posts!
We start on a personal note when a couple of years ago, while driving back to base 
we found and caught this
 BARN OWL
(in our own backyard)
which was seen to have blood on its face but still a trial for a
Fat Lad to catch!

 A couple of holidaymakers (you remember holidaymakers)
showed great interest in the bird and volunteered to traspot it to the
Ringwood Owl Sanctuary
where, unfortunately, it died overnight.
 A fairly scarce
YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER
(PBO)
 Far, far more uncommon
BARRED WARBLER
(PBO)
 A common garden bird the
WREN
this one finding its way into the Farmhouse lounge 
with the fleet footed (myself) managing to catch it.
An absolute delight to observe even on 'home turf' in the heart of a 
Reed Bed
 BEARDED TIT
has to be high on just about everybodies favourites list
 but seen in the hand, again at the PBO,
WOW!
 BLACKCAP
(male)
 BLACKCAP
(female)
 TREE PIPIT
 BRAMBLING
 SWALLOW
(this quartet of relatively 'common' birds all mist netted at the PBO)
 CETTI'S WARBLER
 another denizen of the redbed more ofted heard than seen.
(Radipole Lake)
 WATER RAIL,
maybe not thought of by some as a long distant migrant, was captured onboard the
Buchan Alpha Floating Oil Production Platform
in the
North Sea.
 A complimentary ticket was issued, transpoted to Aberdeen by
Bristow's Helicopter, 'ringed' and released into a local reedbed.
 (male)
and
 (female)
REDSTART
were again visitors to the PBO while back on 

 Buchan Alpha
we had captures an exhausted
COMMON TERN
 and we leave you, for this Post at least with a 
Right Bobby Dazzler.
As the second hand ticked past mid-night heralding my 60th birthday in stroad the
Chief Engineer
anouncing "eer's your birthday present Bags, an many more of them"!
 He handed me a cotton bag of the type issued to all of the crew just in case of such an occassion,
the Catching of Birds that is in oppose to my Birthday's
in which was found an active 
 LITTLE STINT
the first for me in the hand
and the first for the 
North Sea Bird Club
which acts in the same way as any County Bird Club with its own
Recorder, Rarities and General Committee.
WATCH OUT FOR MORE TO COME IN THESE LEAN TIMES!

Thursday, 4 June 2020

Fox on the Run - Sweet or Manfred Mann

If You Prefer!
The Forecaster had predicted the downpour to start at 06:00
 so looking towards the heavens at 05:00 it was considered
he / she was not going to be far wrong.
 Just a glance at the collar of the 
Garden Trap
encouraged positive hope as
 thousands of Midges clung on to both trap and surrounds.
Among the 54 Macro Moths of 22 Species came c2
Firsts for the Year
with another (Pug) in abeyance!
 SHOULDER-STRIPED WAINSCOT
and the not dissimilar
 FLAME
Additionally but not unexpectedly there was also a
 BROWN HAWKER DRAGONFLY
which has become annual here in one or other of the traps.
The rain started on the last stroke of 6 followed by a long wait for a lull
which started at about noon
but even then very little (no)
SUNSHINE
but we did manage to get in a 'click' or 2 which were, strangely, mostly
Mammals.
Under one of the Reptile covers was found the nest of a
 FIELD VOLE
 which with a bit of silent patience enticed one of the adults to
Break Cover!
A surprise at the Irrigation Pond, given the conditions a
LARGE RED DAMSELFLY
 a first but by no means last
FOX
for the day and with lightning striking twice an
 AZURE DAMSELFLY
was encountered at the 
Gravel Pit
 A limited circuit of the southern section of the 
Recording Area
put up a single
 HARE
 while a party of c3
 FOX CUBS
were also much enjoyed.
By coincidence, if you believe in such a thing, another
FOX
(by night)
was this time captured on one of the Trail Cameras that we don't often deploy these days.
In a way, the Sow's Ear was turned into a Silk Purse - always better than a Blank!

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Moth'ers Little Helper - The Rolling Stones

So to start with we bring you the last of the weekends
Delights for some - Detritus for others
with the last of the new additions to the
2020 Moth List.
 ELEPHANT HAWK-MOTH
 POPLAR LUTESTRING
 SATIN WAVE
 BROKEN-BARRED CARPET
 PURPLE BAR
ditto with raised abdomen
RIBAND WAVE
 One of the more annoying Moths the 
LITTLE THORN
which insists on perching with wings tightly folded!
FOXGLOVE PUG
 MARBLED WHITE SPOT
 SMALL SERAPHIM
 MAY HIGHFLIER
VALARIAN PUG
BLACK SEXTON BEETLE
MARBLED BROWN
 BEAUTIFUL HOOK-TIP
HAWORTH'S PUG
IT'S GETTING DESPERATELY QUIET!
So we 'end' with them as well!