Friday, 11 September 2015

Merlin's Time - Al Stewart

The 'desperation' of recent days continues and while we have made every effort to bring at least 'something' to the table it looks as though we are going to have to 'seek' a little harder. While it would be easy just to cast yesterday off as a Duff Day, there is always/usually something to catch the eye which in that case were again the huge numbers of Hirundines clinging to the telephone wires. This time it was the turn of
 HOUSE MARTIN
to be most numerous, with just a few Swallow and no Sand Martin seen,
 but how do they know that exact moment when the camera shutter is depressed?
The second and only other item of the day didn't appear on our Radar
until an 06:00 text this morning from Adrian the Farm Manager simply asking
"what is this"?
 As usual, he had the foresight to take a photograph from which it can be seen as a
CLIFDEN NONPAREIL
a 'scarce' and 'beautiful' Moth to say the very least.
Regular Readers will no doubt remember our own success in catching
this particular specimen (shown for fuller illustration) on 28/09/2015,
while reports also this morning point to others at West Bexington (Dave Foot)
where they have chosen to use the alternative vernacular name of
Blue Underwing.
So, onward to our own findings of the day where the very last Insect 
out of the 5 Moth Traps takes First and Pride of Place.
 WHITE-SPECK
qualifies not only as the 300th species of Macro Moth for the
Recording Area this year but also
the first of its kind to be taken!
It is also the 39th species this year to be added to the same list which now totals
423
In addition we caught
 
 SALLOW
 LUNAR UNDERWING
and
 BORDERED BEAUTY
while other Insects were represented by a
 BURYING BEETLE
of which it is said can sense a dead carcass (food) at a distance of 
Six Miles
video
and always worth a look underneath for Parasites, this
Beetle is still alive!
However, most unexpected (except for the 'Lifer')
 somehow a
 SOUTHERN HAWKER
 DRAGONFLY
was caught up in the mix!
On the usual circuit once again today there was no sign of either
LITTLE OWL
which brings up the 16th day of absence? while on the
Gravel Pit it appeared that the former brood of c14
 MALLARD
 has now been reduced to just 2?
 GREENFINCH
both juvenile and adult still abound while in the Heath this
 Unidentified Fungi, 
with likely some strange Latin name, was found first.
No good for someone who cannot even speak Engrish Ploppery!
For the same someone, who up until 2015 hadn't knowingly seen a
 SMOOTH SNAKE
in his life, this 'new one' now brings up my 16th - not bad eh!
On the airport the first steel reinforcing,
 for the proposed Electrical Components Factory, is being erected
while on the way back what was though to be the same 
 MERLIN
of a week ago cut across the path, again without any photographic evidence.
That first occurrence was considered 'early', but since then, from various
other parts of Dorset, there have been others.
Europe's smallest Bird of Prey isn't easy to catch up with on camera
so a couple of images here from the Oil Rig 'Buchan Alpha' back in 2006.
In both cases the 'prey species' is
REDWING.
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