Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Sunrise Sunset - Fiddler on the Roof


EARLY MORNING MACKEREL SKY
and that extra hour of daylight at dawn makes all the difference!
Despite the drop in temperature as November arrived, we are still
seeing some action among a marked reduction in Insects.
 YELLOW-LINE QUAKER
is yet another First for the Year while unlike most others
pursuing this pastime we hadn't seen a
COMMON MARBLED CARPET
 here since the Spring, even though as the name suggests it is common.
BLAIR'S SHOULDER-KNOT
also continue to grace our traps in fact there were c4 today 
but we did have an escapee!
While we are content enough to just linger and watch the
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MALLARD
feeding and
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preening with the odd
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GREY WAGTAIL
showing up while dreaming of a Black-winged Stilt doing likewise,
it is always best to keep a weather-eye open for
passers by as was the case yesterday. Seemingly heading for the Gravel Pit
it wasn't long before we located the
 EGYPTIAN GOOSE
which often prefer the lofty perch the 'mountain' provides.
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Not wishing to spook it something of a distance was maintained
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allowing us to gain some stills and footage before it flew off.
A juvenile
MOORHEN
chugged across the watercourse before we left but it was now time to head for the
Solar Panel Compound
and to turn some of our sheet-metal covers there.
Under the very first a nice find in the shape of a
 COMMON SHREW
which was almost too fast for us, and likewise a fairly speedy
 VIOLET GROUND BEETLE
which was considered rather resplendent in the dull sunlight.
The 'creepy-crawlies' were punctuated by what is thought to be
 PHOLIOTA HIGHLANDENSIS
 while on the Heath was spotted the best find of the day a
WOODLARK
 only the second of what can only be described as a disastrous
year here for them.
On arrival back at Slight Return II a message was sent to my friend
John Gifford informing him of my good luck of seeing a
 DEMOISELLE CRANE
 flying across the Heath. It was only later that it was decided to reveal that 
it was in fact tattooed on the tail-plane of this
ZH 880 - 130J
RAF HERCULES TRANSPORT AIRCRAFT
While it is not certain what all this is about it is thought to be
connected with the 100 Anniversary of 47 Squadron at RAF Northolt?
The low cloud-base at the time didn't help matters.
The last hour of fast fading daylight and the first of darkness
was spent by returning to the Heath, in hope of maybe a returning
Short-eared Owl or Woodcock,
at the very least, but we were to be disappointed. The total list included
c2 Green Woodpecker, c10 Meadow Pipit going to roost, a 
Carrion Crow, a Magpie along with a late to settle Wren.
There will be other times when we hope for a similar sunset.
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