Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Threatening Kitten

A quiet day today, the dull weather resulted in a large flock of sand martin feeding low over Ibsley Water, I estimated about 800 early on, but in the rain later I think there were probably over a 1000. The moth trap contained one new species for the year, a sallow kitten. It fell off the egg box as I lifted it from the trap and adopted a characteristic pose, presumably designed to look threatening. It certainly looks as though it might possibly sting and perhaps not be just a harmless moth. In case you have never seen the inside of a moth trap, egg boxes are invaluable filling for the moths to hide in after they have been attracted to the light. During the afternoon a group for Ireland involved in the control of alien water plants visited the reserve. They have many of the same problems with escaped plants as we do here, they dominate natives species and can have dramatic impacts upon the food chain. This can lead to serious impacts upon populations of insects, birds and fish, to name but a few. In the worst cases they can even block water courses enough to impede boat traffic on canals. Not many birds to report today, a dunlin and up to 5 common tern being the best I heard of.

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