Wednesday, 9 August 2017

2nd Half of July

19th/20th July

Two days away with the lads to photograph ospreys at Gwash Trout Farm, close to Rutland Water proved to be a bit of a disappointment as after beautiful weather we encountered dull cloud and drizzle on our time away.  We had booked for two evening sessions, 4.00-9.00pm., the four of us sitting in the hide overlooking a small trout pool where on the first night we had one visit from an osprey. We had just one opportunity when it dived and missed its target and the poor light didn't help either.  The second evening had better light but unfortunately no ospreys.  During the second day we traveled around the 'reservoir' visiting a few of the hides and dodging the 'mizzle'.  We did see a pair of ospreys with two fully grown young from the aptly named 'Osprey Hide' on the south side of the 'reservoir' and a wood sandpiper. We arrived home late that night after having a one hour wait at the Dartford Crossing bridge where all the four lanes were suddenly reduced to one, but not a soul to be seen working on the bridge, just two vans!

24th +

I had a couple of visits to Oare seeing the Bonaparte's gull, turtle dove,ruff, golden plovers, 3 curlew sandpipers but no in depth visits to Seasalter.  

August is shaping up badly with the two twin 6 year olds to entertain during the holidays and to top that the other half fell over at Samphire Hoe on the 2nd and broke or rather smashed her wrist which is now in plaster and out of action for several weeks!!! 

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

!st Half of July, Dragonflies and Butterflies

4th July

An evening visit to Grove hoping for something to point the camera at, the only items on the menu were the Norfolk hawkers that have being so abundant this year.


A day out to Sissinghurst and Scotney Castle looking for dragonflies, Scotney being the only one producing the goods, I didn't see any emeralds though. The white-legged damselfly was abundant around the lake but no small red-eyes.

White-legged Damselfly

Later that evening I went out looking for barn owls finding a couple but the camera was lacking a bit of shutter speed.


I went to Sheldwich to get a shot of this field of mainly bluish flowers, Echium plantagineum I was led to believe and grown for the oil.


Another visit to Temple Ewell finding heaps of chalkhill blues and marbled whites.


More visits to Temple Ewell photographing the butterflies, marbled whites and chalkhill blues again being the most commonly seen.

 I came across this mating pair amidst all the chalkhill blues and assumed that was what they were but 'commons' look to be a good call as well?


Large White


Marbled White

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

June including the Red-Foot

4th June

Suffering a bit of man-flu but tempted out by a call from Geoff about red kites at Seasalter. They were over the field along Seasalter Lane, three of them, although the farmer I met who told me he had seen eight. The kites must have been tired as they were on the ground at first but got up times for a fly about and at one time were fighting with a buzzard over a moorhen that one of them had caught. This was the morning after the big influx of over well over a hundred plus yesterday afternoon.

Red Kite Holding a Moorhen/Jackdaw or Something

14th June

First time out for a while and went to East Blean Woods finding a few heath fritllaries and at least two white admirals.

16-21st North of England

A really hot period first stopping at Flamborough and RSPB Bempton and get some photos of the gannets etc. but the bright sun made exposure tricky for the camera.

We had a day out on the moors finding a few red grouse, one with chicks. A few curlew could be heard calling and at one stop I disturbed a snipe with its young as I got out of the car.

The last couple of days were spent visiting my brother further north.

22nd June

I had a look at Duncan Down, close to where I live seeing a couple of broad-bodied chasers, large skippers and a red-eyed damselfly and some blues.

25th June

I went to Kingsdown looking for marbled whites which I found near the riffle range.

30th June  

I went to see the red-footed falcon at Grove.

The End of May

Sorry, I have been busy with other things lately and not much birding so I am just posting the low lights of the last part of the month.

20th May

Two wheatears still hanging around by the huts at Seasalter, might they breed?

21st May

The wheatears are were present plus a red-legged partridge was a welcome addition to the year list.

23rd May

Two yellow wagtails along the seawall path near the white post, LNR but no wheatears by the huts. Every year a pair hang around for two or three weeks leading me to hope they will breed.
I saw a variable damselfly and the Swalecliffe female eider turned up on the 'island' roost.

 Meadow Pipit

26th May

A sunny day, so I went to Stodmarsh finding variable and azure damselflies.

 Blue-tailed Damselfly

Azure Damselfly

28th- 30th Wales

A photographic jolly with three others to mid-Wales, first stop at Gigrin to see the red kites as the weather was good. We reluctantly coffed up £25 each to use the top hide, too expensive, maybe not again, not worth it.  That was a good move as the rest of the time it was dull and mizzly all shots requiring high ISOs. Most of the time was spent at Gilfach where the redstarts weren't playing ball but the pied flycatchers were, although mainly in the shade. Wood warblers were about singing in the trees but no chance of photos. The last full day was rainy so we cut it short and came home in the afternoon

 Pied Flycatchers