Monday, 26 July 2010

Something Worth Blogging About

Some of you may have noticed that I haven't updated my blog for a week now, this has mainly been due to a week of full on hardcore housework, but also in some small part, a lack of anything to say. There have been a few new moths and a couple of interesting insects in the garden but that's about as exiting as it got. Well until yesterday that is, with all the housework done and no work either I was foot loose and fancy free. I decided to go over to the New Forest to look for Bog Orchid. I popped over to Bun's first and looked through the moth catch and then we set of for Hampshire at about 5.30. Why so early for a plant? You may be thinking (Steve). Well, it was simply to get to the New Forest and out again before the hoards of holidaymakers surfaced and the traffic built up. I had been given directions to a site for the Bog Orchids and we saw one within a couple of minutes of leaving the car, which was nice! If they were ( a lot) bigger we'd have been able to see them from the car! I didn't manage to get them on my blog yesterday though because I couldn't get a 'look in' on the computer. Martha has discovered that amazingly people are (via a certain auction site) prepared to part with actual money to get their hands on items of her discarded useless tat. Or quality collectibles if you prefer, I don't. Anyway I've got on it first this evening and so can delight you with photos of small green plants. If any of you don't like plants ( unthinkable though that is) keep reading on as there's a brilliant butterfly still to come.
This stick was marking one of the orchids, which is the teeny yellow thing about halfway between the stick and the left edge of the photo. To give a idea of scale the stick was about 30cm tall.
The diminutive and rather plain, but none the less lovely Bog Orchid.
The flowers show the typical orchid structure when seen up close.
I was also thrilled to see  loads of Sundews
I know they are pretty common in bogs but I don't spend a lot of time in bogs!!
I don't think I'd seen a Sundew for about 26 years!

Today I popped over the border to a site in Somerset to see something even nicer than a Bog Orchid ( if you can imagine such a thing). That something was a butterfly, the White Letter Hairstreak which would be a new butterfly species for me. The site I visited was simply superb and in the sweltering sun I counted no less than eighteen species of butterfly! I saw three different individuals of WLH each of which I was able to photograph, they were all looking a bit 'battered around the corners' and past their prime but I'm not complaining, I know how they feel!
Although this third one had lost a big piece from the forewing it had a full compliment of 'tails'.
In case you don't know why it's called the White Letter Hairstreak, it's due to the white line on the hindwing resembling the letter W. 

I mentioned at the start of this post that there have been a few new moths this week, these were Small Rivulet, Tawny-barred Angle ( both too worn to warrant a photo) and Yellow Shell.
Yellow Shell
I also photographed a few more micros
Meal Moth
This moth is usually only found in and around buildings where grain is stored. Goes to show how much bird food Bun has stashed around the place!
Agapeta zoegana
Aethes rubigana

Finally, just a couple of miscellaneous photos from this week. Firstly, while I was slaving away in front of the kitchen sink I noticed something peeking over the top of the garden fence in front of the window, it was this splendid set of antennae, I knew who they belonged to.

And these two photos from Bun's garden. They aren't the clearest photos because I had to take them through glass.
Feathers maketh the Robin, No?
Anyone fancy a stroke?

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