Saturday, 15 May 2010

Duke of Burgundy

You may or may not have noticed but I've been away from 'blogland' for a while, I've even had a week off work and not really seen or done anything worth blogging about. What an exciting life I lead! Actually I tell a lie, for last Saturday I (along with three other eager but deluded individuals) went to Cornwall to look at someone's 'tweety pie' . The House Finch was a very nice little bird, but wild? In all probability I think not. In our defence we did rush off for the bird before we'd heard news of the colour being 'all wrong'. We were very fortunate to be close at hand when the householder (somewhat reluctantly) agreed to let birders into his garden to view the bird a few at a time and were among the first to see it. I definitely wouldn't have queued for two hours or more, even if it was 'pukka'; I'm not that bonkers! ;-).

On Thursday and again today Steve and I went butterfly hunting in Somerset, although if you're a follower of Steve's blog you'll already know this. In fact I could just pop in a hyperkink to his blog here and save me the trouble of writing anything! No.I've started so I'll finish. The woodland where we were hoping to see Duke of Burgundy is where we usually go at this time of year to hear (and hopefully see) Nightingales. We usually go at dusk, when it's cold and the midges are biting, but never again! On Thursday's visit  (at around midday) I got my best ever views, and several were in really good voice too! ;-)

We managed to see a Duke of Burgundy today, a lone female ( I think), although it was great to see (a lifer for us both) it was also a little bit disheartening to know how poorly this species is doing in the UK. It may well become extinct here in the not too distant future. Such a shame. Other lifers were Grizzled Skipper and the 'aesthetically challenged' though non the less fascinating, Bird's Nest Orchid. And best of, best of, best of all! It was warm and sunny! :-)
Anyway enough waffling, here are a few pics.

This was the first one of these I've seen stationary. 
A Bee Fly.
Steve stalking a Grizzled Skipper, can you see it? It's very small.

Grizzled Skipper
Whilst I was trying to move a blade of grass from in front of the Duke of  Burgundy in order to get a better photo she moved over onto my finger! A 'magic moment' What a privilege!
Small definitely IS beautiful! 

Bird's Nest Orchid
When Steve saw these he said " Ugh! That's the worst thing I've ever seen!"
If that wasn't hyperbole then he's led a very sheltered life and needs to get out more!

Close ups of the flowers show that they have the typical orchid structure. I must admit they haven't a lot going for them in the looks department, but they're interesting and that's alright by me!

Talking of interesting, it's Lundy Cabbage day tomorrow and I can barely contain my excitement. Early start too so it's off to bed for me. Night night.


Backward Birder said...

Pretty butterflies and an.... um ..... 'interesting' orchid!

Lol! I've just seen my verification word is 'nerdcone'.....

Did you go for the Lesserlegs Karen? Definitely a better bird than plastic cage-finches.. ;)
Hope Cabbage-land proves Puffinalicious for you!

Anonymous said...

Great finds and pics. Even better for me, the DoB and the Bird's Nest Orchid occur on the IoW - I'd better start searching..

kirstallcreatures said...

Lovely pics of the Duke of Burgundy Karen, what a treat, Linda

Karen Woolley said...

Thanks for comments folks :-)

Hope you connect Rob

I didn't go for the Lesserlegs Tom, especially after it moved to the Camel Estuary, needle in haystack springs to mind.
Cabbage land was 'Foggy Puffinless' for us....:-(