Friday, 20 July 2018

Back On The Patch

When not busy with those things that just keep needing doing, I've been keeping an eye on certain bits of the Patch, in the [probably vain] hope of 2nd gen. butterflies.
Also, things have been getting busy in the Skygarden, with some entertaining interactions between 1st and 2nd brood Blackbirds, as you shall see.....

Summer on the Riviera

Well, some people are enjoying the weather.

Not just people!

Voice Of Attenborough:
"Here, on the Serengeti..."

Woolly-looking Spear

Butterfly numbers are falling with the ongoing drought, with the most numerous species on the wing now being these little things;

Six-spot Burnet Moth
on Wild Marjoram

And on Meadow Thistle

Marbled White, clinging on

Kidney Vetch, also still going

In amongst the grasses

Creeping Thistles 
laugh at droughts

So while the grasses are all browned, so far the legumes et al are still green. Good for some, not so much for others. Ach, when will we get some rain??


Right, time for a vast number of pics taken through glass, with the usual reflections and dirty bits associated with that.

Behold, the Black[ish]birds!!

Swallow-tailed Blackbird

"I am not part Song Thrush, you cheeky blighter!"

Frankenstein's Blackbird

Naumann's Blackbird

Strike a pose, darling

"Does my bum look big in this plumage?"

"Are you my Mummy?"

Simultaneously: "Feeed meee!!"

Who ate all the pies mealworms?

So, three fresh 2nd brooders, there.
While the photo doesn't lie, and the one on the right is bigger, it's the one in front in this shot that's the most, er, 'vociferous' as they say, frequently driving the others off the scratching patch [that's the remains of it up there, full of juicy mealworms and suet bits when loaded by yours truly] the last couple of mornings. The suet block feeder hangs above this point, so when the older ones have a go, the bits fall there, thus prime position!

It is not all Black though, with Coal Tits still zipping in for sunflower seeds, and while most of the Greenfinches are off moulting, you still get some colour,

Tucking in to Vine House Farm's finest

Going old skool
One of two juvie Blue Tits

"Oi, I'm trying to moult here"


Yes, that was awful even by my standards, but a night shot that you can [just about] recognise? Priceless. Also probably unique.

Ok, that's it.

Be Seeing You...

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

More From Exminster

While dipping the Norfolk Hawker at the weekend, I came across all manner of things photogenic. More than enough for one post, so here are a few of the Other Bits.

Let's start with some scenery;


Fluffy Little Clouds

Norfolk Hawker territory.
Well, it was the day before....

Flowering Rush


Branched Bur-reed

Marsh Woundwort?


Water Mint
and a Small Tortoiseshell

Small White

Unmunched Peacock

Hiding from the Emperors

Footballer Hoverfly

Ruby Tiger

And from below

Sedge Warbler

The '..If you value your life'
goes unsaid!

A nice lady with a blue box
 gave me a lift back to the Carboniferous.
It seemed oddly familiar.

Strange Days When Emperors Perch

Back to Normal Service:
Flight shot!

Another Small Red-eyed Damselfly shot

And more Scarce Chaser

In the sunshine

Emperors just kept posing..

Fun and games, just missing the Star Player.

Coming up; an update from the Patch, wherein you will discover- Ah, but that would be telling.

Be Seeing You...

Monday, 16 July 2018

Another Twitching Post...

...Another dip.


With the only good birds waaaay out of reach in places daft, and a proper First right over there, what was I to do on Saturday?

Norfolk Hawker?!?! What the actual?? But there it was so there I went.

Of course there it wasn't, whether it had done a Friday Night Special [unlikely] or had either been noshed by an Emperor [not implausible], been stolen by a BLEEEP with a net and a big pin [also sadly plausible], or just moved to a section of channel out of sight of the public [most plausible theory in my mind].

But the sun was shining, fluffy little clouds were being all Orb-ish, I had some good company in the fruitless search, and there weren't that many Horseflies..

There were also a few other insects to looks at. Some even posed.

Now, the question is; How many is too many?? :)

By far the most numerous;
Azure Damselfly

Damsels first, I think.

Blue-tailed Damselfly

Common Blue Damselfly

Large Red-eyed Damselfly

Nice pruinescence, there.
Those latter two were on the canal - yes I checked everywhere! - as was this

Small Red-eyed Damselfly

Up close and personal!?! This normally never happens... Then again, neither does finding the following on little channels on the Marsh;

Small Red-eyed Damsel

About 150m away from the above

Between the two

Small Red-eyeds are spreading out. :D

On to the bigger stuff,

The Emperor!

Slightly more worn Emperor

Lots of these about, marauding and munching anything that moved, like poor innocent butterflies..

Discarded Peacock.
Emperor grabbed it, ate its abdomen, 
then dropped the rest...

Southern Hawker.
Ovipositing female

Scarce Chaser

The rarest visible dragonfly.

I can't get enough of these wonderful insects!

Mature female
Appeared very brown in flight..!

Classic Black-tailed Skimmer

Common Darter

Ruddy Darter

A very confiding individual - for once!

Wind eased off a bit..

..Then picked up again

Yeah, that was a few photos.

I have more.

I'll put up another post, with non-dragony insects and flowers and so on. Maybe a fewww more dragons, too.

Yes, it was yet another dip in now a second year of suckyness - even getting to retrospective dips, as perfectly decent birds are genetically proved to be argentatus Herring Gulls - but all the posing dragons were good, and that Ruddy made the day.

And even better, as I type this..  RAAAAAIIIIIINNNN!!!!!

Ah, it's stopped. Well, 5 minutes is better than none. Hopefully with the schools breaking up, we'll have decent levels. I'm very worried for the butterflies.

Be Seeing You...