Monday 13 May 2013

Just a Few Bugs

During the heady, sunny days of summer i.e. last week! I took a few 'macro' shots of inverts, mostly from the garden  but also from Axe Cliff and Aylesbeare Common, including several Hoverflies to test out my new book. Feel free to correct me on the IDs, I'm probably wrong.

Eristalis intricarius on Seaton Marshes

  Helophilus pendulus 
 ( I did see the hind tibia clearly on another photo)

Eristalis pertinax

 Red Mason Bee (Osmia rufa)

Spiderlings of Garden Spider (Araneus diadematus)

Bloody-nosed Beetle (Timarcha tenebricosa)

Glow Worm Larvae (Lampyris noctiluca)

Sunday 12 May 2013

Bonaparte's Gull at Topsham

Seeing as it's gone very quiet on patch, Bun and I drove over to the Exe in time for the falling tide at Topsham Recreation ground, this being when the Bonaparte's Gull frequents the area. We were bang on time and the gull was loafing about on the far bank with its 'best mate' a first summer Little Gull. It was a bit too distant for my long lens and I hadn't taken my scope along so I took a couple of photos with the super-zoom thus...

Bonaparte's Gull and first summer Little Gull.

Salubrious surroundings too!

After a while the gulls moved to the centre of the river and began to quarrel a bit over an island that was emerging as the tide fell, obviously wanting to be the first to get at any worms which were slow in returning to their burrows. This was much nearer to our vantage point and I was now able to get some shots with the long lens. There was a bit of flying around too allowing or a few flight shots as well. We had some fantastic views of what was only the second Bonaparte's Gull either of us had seen and the first adult. In full breeding plumage too!

Little Gull

Thursday 9 May 2013


This morning I got up and decided that what would be nice before breakfast would be...To take a quick trip over to the outskirts of Lyme Regis, park in a small car park and (without even having to leave the car) get crippling views of a Hoopoe. Which is exactly what I did! Not quite on patch, so it can't go on the photo-list but I couldn't care less really. Only my forth ever Hoopoe and my best photos of one by miles!!

It was certainly finding plenty to eat.
Here it appears to be extracting a woodlouse from its armour.

 Now you see the leatherjacket...

Now you don't.

Wednesday 8 May 2013

Showing Well

It would be very nice indeed if a few more birds showed as well as the Sanderling which Steve found on Seaton beach this morning. It just kept getting nearer and nearer. Perhaps I shouldn't have lay down prone on the beach though, my back isn't half complaining about it now!

No. 105 Sanderling

And one just for fun...

Monday 6 May 2013

Butterflies at Thurlbear and a Few More Ticks

I popped over the border into Somerset this afternoon, my destination was Thurlbear Quarrylands and my target species was Duke of Burgundy. I saw two male Dukes along with numerous Grizzled Skippers and a single Dingy Skipper, all firsts for the year.  Nightingales were singing periodically too even though it was full sun, which was nice!

This male Duke of Burgundy had a couple of marks (scratches) on his wings which easily distinguished him from this male...

Dingy Skipper

Grizzled Skipper

Back on Wednesday last week I got a patch year-tick (which I was sure I'd missed my chance of getting when I didn't see the one that was on Colyford Marsh briefly one evening last month) when a pair of Garganey arrived on Black Hole Marsh late afternoon. Unfortunately I was at work and missed them showing well. I did see them though (and more importantly get a blurry  record shot of them) after work, when they were a bit too distant even for successful digiscoping. They ARE easily recognizable though.

No. 102 Garganey

I've been out on patch a lot since then but have only added two more birds to the photo list.

No. 103 Dunlin

No. 104 Coot

And to finish a few random bird photos...

Whimbrel on the estuary.... Some of you may want to look away now...

As of this evening there are three clutches of  Canada Goose goslings on Black Hole Marsh.

A brand new Moorhen.


What they thought was a private moment.