Monday, 17 July 2017

Sunday Bloody Sunday - U2

With emphasis on the 'B' word in the Headline
we set about the second day of last weekend, as ever,
monitoring the c5 Moth Traps on Parley Court Farm.
 Close to being the first Insect out of a trap
 
FOUR-SPOTTED FOOTMAN
 was considered a good start to the mission and like all the others shown
First for the Year.
 EAR MOTH
 a slightly ragged but no less welcome
SILKY WAINSCOT
along with the diminutive
SMALL RUFOUS
and an even smaller
SLENDER PUG
and as our valued regular readers know
"we don't do Micros"
but there is always room for an exception to the rule, especially when it looks like
BEAUTIFUL CHINA MARK
With Dave heading off directly to the traps it was impossible for me to simply
pass the ponds by, so as on every day it was a stop at the
Irrigation Pond.
Immediately, it was a massive surprise to find c2
 GREENSHANK
 feeding at the waters edge. Unfortunately the vegetation there is now at it highest
not allowing for best of viewing, but nonetheless this record shot was secured.
 Further to that, we delved into the archive to bring you these slightly better images
of only the 3rd and 4th record for our
Recording Area.
The 'B' word came into play as we moved location to monitor the c3 traps
under auxiliary power, only to find that what must have been early in the night the
generator have given out. There few Moths to sort through, in fact my count was 12,
but even then there was a ray of hope as
SOUTHERN WAINSCOT
also joined the others already on the Year List.
The question then was what to do next and that is where modern technology
plays its part. The continued presence of a 'rare' Dragonfly had been Tweeted earlier in the day,
and lucky for us the site, Longham Lake is no more than 15 minutes from where we stood.
There was however just one other duty to perform before setting off
as Dave had nurtured some eggs from a
SCARCE MERVEILLE du JOUR
and was now about to release the resulting
LARVAE (Caterpillars)
back to the wild in hopes of increasing populations.
Despite the Tweet, the extreme rarity of this Insect and the fine weather,
human activity at the lakes was almost nonexistent, but then it is an inch and a bit long
and the area only a couple of hundred acres so not a problem.
However, the visit was not to be dull as within a very short time Dave had picked-up on a

LESSER EMPEROR DRAGONFLY

(lower image © Pete Moore)
of which during our stay we may well have seen 3 or 4 but not one of them
was seen to land, hence a 'borrowed' image from Wikipedia.
Very similar to its close cousin the
EMPEROR DRAGONFLY,
a number of which were close by and most obliging, with the diagnostic feature
being the 'blue saddle' between thorax and abdomen in the Lesser.
video
Not a lot of action in this clip.
TUFTED DUCK with YOUNG
BLACK-TAILED SKIMMER
just before a brief encounter with a swimming
GRASS SNAKE
Unfortunately, no time to activate the Video Camera.
Pete Moore (sat), James Philips and partner Jean.
COMMON BLUE DAMSELFLY
There followed a nice little sequence
as this
GREAT CRESTED GREBE
surfaced with a fish, and while we cannot be 100% certain it does look like a
ROACH

SMALL RED-EYED DAMSELFLY
once resident at
Parley Court Farm
but not in the last 2 years.

While studying this juvenile
WILLOW WARBLER
a shout and a wave went up from Pete alerting the rest of us to the much sort after
Star of the Show
SCARLET DARTER
video
just about as rare as it gets when it comes to Dragonflies in this country.
video
You can forget all about the
Sir Douglas Quintet
and their fine hit record
She's About A Mover (Link)
video
as 'at perch' it did little more than flick its wings but at times took
the occasional little sortie into the middle of the pond.
After feasting our eyes this was another Very Happy
Quintet.
On the way back there was to be one final treat as we came across
JULIAN THOMAS
newly arrived from Somerset to view this rare creature.
In the past he and I did a bit of 'Birding' together, but it has been
Several years since we have seen each other.
A real treat and perfect end to a magical, interesting and educational day!
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