Saturday, 10 July 2010

Life Saving Pallets

Almost all the Common Terns have now fledged and are flying around, many of them now on Ibsley Water, using the shingle spit in front of the Lapwing hide as their base. I am pretty sure 38 have flown so far, with two large chicks still to go and one adult still "sitting" although I suspect this last is a vain hope. The addition of the pallets moored between the rafts as a refuge for chicks that get blown off the rafts when doing practice wing-flaps seems to have been a success and I don't think any chicks have been lost when swimming off after falling into the water. The pallets have also proved popular resting places for youngsters on early flights, it keeps them away from adults still feeding chicks on the nesting rafts, who can be rather aggressive.
The warm nights continue good for moths, a selection of the Thursday/Friday night catch is below. The first is Slender Brindle, a subtle, but rather pleasing patterned species.
To show that it is not just the big ones that are smart, the moth below is a "micro" with no common name, Catoptria pinella a species of heathy woodlands and boggy places, not all that common, but very fine in my opinion, it is about 13mm long.
Next a moth that has a name that does tell you something about what it looks like, this is a common species, the Snout, named for the long palps.
Lastly a fairly big one and rather beautiful, the Large Emerald, which is indeed relatively large and green.
I did not get out much on Friday as the plumber was in trying to find ways of reducing our water use and so the frequency of need to empty the septic tank, which cost us about £2000 last year.
We also had the first day of Compostcam in the new location and were rewarded with at least three Grass Snakes in the morning, I suspect it was just too warm for them in the afternoon.
Once again on Friday, as we had on Wednesday and Thursday, the volunteers were out removing Ragwort from the shores of Ibsley Water, almost all the open shore is done now, an amazing effort as this is nearly 3km of shore and it was very dense in places. The car park area is still to do and the shore near the Tern hide looks as though it will not get done as the Little Ringed Plovers are still sitting on their eggs so we cannot go out there.

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