Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Shore Planning

Another good moth night with 68 species identified so far and a couple of micros still to go. Some of the micros are very fine, the picture is of Caloptilia stigmatella, or at least I think it is, there are several similar species.
I spent the activity working part of the day "Ragworting" again, not the most inspiring of tasks. I did notice that there seems to have been an increase in the number of red admirals about, possibly locally hatched or maybe more likely migrants. This opinion was supported by the large number of the migrant hoverfly Episyrphus balteatus in my garden when I got home.
In the middle of the day I went out to look at the proposed work on Ibsley Water, we are looking to break up the longest spit into a chain of islands and lower the top height to produce more shallows. It will be into the autumn before it happens but it pays to plan ahead. I will need to go out int he boat to take some soundings as well, but we should be working in the area next week so that should give me the chance to push the boat out.
Up close it is clear the spit is not smooth in cross-section, the south side is steep and the northern gently sloping, the water depth is also very different being deep on the south and shallow to the north.
All this working around the shore gave me an opportunity to count the mute swans, I got to at least 205, much my highest count of the year so far. I have also counted 264 greylag, but I feel sure there are quiet a few more. There were also 11 Egyptian geese and a black swan. A couple of common sandpiper were reported today and there were two fox cubs strolling the shore near the Tern hide as I locked up, causing the still sitting little ringed plovers a good bit of alarm.

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