Thursday, 30 June 2011

A Touch of Autumn

The year slowly moves on and hints of approaching autumn are starting to appear. From the Tern hide first thing 2 common sandpiper along the shore near the hide were birds on their way south after, trying to breed somewhere in the uplands of norther Britain. A lot of the first brood juvenile sand martin will already have headed off. News from the ringers, in yesterday morning, included that they caught no young reed warbler, even though they had several on the last visit, presumably they have already moved on.
The moth trap included a scarce migrant, a small marbled, unfortunately it flew off before I could get a picture of it, a shame as it was rather attractive. I did get a picture of the other notable catch, a mirco that does not seem to have been recorded along the Avon Valley, or even in south-west Hampshire before, pictured below it is Stathmopoda pedella.
The day was fine and very pleasant, as befits "Volunteer Thursday". We were working on the eastern shore of Ibsley Water, somewhat inevitably, clearing ragwort. The longer grass on this shore is ideal habitat for butterflies like meadow brown and marbled white and for the Roesel's bush-cricket.
Other birds today included 5 Egyptian geese on Ibsley Water and the family of oystercatcher. At the Centre as I went through the moth trap it was pleasing to hear a lesser spotted woodpecker calling, it is good to know they are still around. From the Ivy South hide several more of the common tern are flying, some really rather well now.

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