Thursday, June 26, 2014

Back to Broadway

The Broadway Cemetery conservation area looking very nice at the moment. Mainly common insects but some reasonable photos.

Common Darter Sympetrum striolatum

Harlequin Ladybird Harmonia axyridis f. succinea

Tree Bumblebee Bombus hypnorum

Common Blue Damselfly Enallagma cyathigerum

Meadow Brown Maniola jurtina

Large Skipper Ochlodes sylvanus

White Ermine Spilosoma lubricipeda, larva

Canon Powershot SX50 HS

Monday, May 26, 2014

Peak District Wildife

A weekend camping in the van near Lathkill Dale in some rather poor weather. However it did clear in the late afternoon on both Saturday and Sunday so we got out for walks in the Dale on Saturday and at Bolehill Wood and Quarry (at Padley) on Sunday. The Dipper and lepidoptera were at Lathkill Dale and the Woodpecker nest and Pied Flycatcher were in Bolehill Wood along with Spotted Flycatcher and other woodland birds. Redstarts were fairly common in both places. The Mandarin was in the grounds of Padley Chapel.

Dipper Cinclus cinclus, Great Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos major & Pied Flycatcher Ficedula hypoleuca

Mandarin Aix galericulata, female

Dipper Cinclus cinclus

Dingy Skipper Erynnis tages

Clouded Magpie Abraxas sylvata

Speckled Yellow Pseudopanthera macularia

Pyrausta cingulata

Canon Powershot SX50 HS

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Gannets and Puffins

A couple of videos from a visit to Bempton Cliffs RSPB reserve. Huge numbers of common seabirds (except Fulmar, which were oddly scarce) going about the, occasionally violent, business of breeding. The continual noise from the Kittiwakes, Guillemots, Razorbills and Gannets provides the backing track.

The reserve is also blessed with many Tree Sparrows around the fields along with a few Corn Buntings.

Look out for the crafty Guillemot towards the end of the Gannet fight in the first video.

Gannets Morus bassanus

Puffin Fratercula arctica

Canon Powershot SX50 HS

Friday, April 25, 2014

Dotterel, Blackbush

Hugh Wright found these first thing today. A nice trip of 3 birds, 2 more colourful females and one rather duller bird. This particular field has a strange attraction for the birds and among several previous occurrences was a bird I found here 6 years ago almost to the day.

Dotterel Charadrius morinellus

Canon Powershot SX50 HS

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Brambling, Ferry Meadows

One of two males seen at Ferry Meadows this morning. The other was a rather brighter summer individual.

Brambling Fringilla montifringilla

Canon Powershot SX50 HS

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

A few from West Penwith

The beginning of April found us back in West Penwith again, this time in an amazing little campervan from Bumble Campers, a local firm converting a van for us at the moment. More of that another time but first some wildlife from the trip.

One of the best birds was my third Cornish Surf Scoter. This one was hard to see in the wet foggy conditions of Mounts Bay near Penzance, and certainly too hard to photograph. Once the sun came out we took to walking the coast paths and gazing out to sea from our campsite at Treen Farm. Gannets, Manx Shearwaters and Guillemots were on the move at sea with Fulmars on the cliffs, Sandwich Terns in Whitesands Bay and the odd Raven and Peregrine kicking about.

Stonechat Saxicola rubicola

Rock Pipit Anthus petrosus

Herring Gull Larus argentatus


Canon Powershot SX50 HS

Monday, March 10, 2014

Some Wildlife Near Fes

Fes Tanneries
My first trip to Morocco this year was to the Fes area in the north of the country to visit three UNESCO World Heritage sites: the medinas of Fes and Meknes and the Roman site of Volubilis.

Meknes Medersa

As always though the wildlife got a look in. The highlight for me was around 10 Short-toed Eagles plus a few Booted Eagles and Marsh Harriers migrating north over our villa just south of Fes one lazy morning. Other migrants were fairly thin on the ground but it was nice to be among Swallows in early March and the vast numbers of Alpine Swifts around the towns were very impressive. The blue form of Moroccan Rock Lizard was also entertaining at Volubilis. Also there Moroccan Hairstreak was a first for me.

Short-toed Eagle Circaetus gallicus

Common Bulbul Pycnonotus barbatus

Crested Lark Galerida cristata

Little Owl Athene noctua

Moroccan Rock Lizard Teira perspicillata

Moroccan Hairstreak Tomares mauretanicus

Acrida ungarica, nymph (presumed ID)

Sickle-bearing Bush-cricket Phaneroptera falcata

Dock Bug sp. Coreus sp.

Sword-grass Xylena exsoleta

Photos Canon Powershot SX50 HS