30 November, 2021

One Day's Birding. Pt.1, Looking For That Varied

After losing Saturday to apathy and bakery [what?], Sunday was a day full of this that and the other.

No, no time for multiple commas in that sentence.

Patch first, in the never-ending never-achieved madness futility quest for a proper Mega of my own:
Hope's Nose early on [I can get up sometimes] was busy with anglers and the Running Man, but not so much with birds. The northerly-ish wind and sunshine were an interesting combination, though the sheltered bits were only used by another increase in Blackbird numbers. Other birders had Fieldfares, but they'd* waited for me to head down, so I missed them :(

A Purple Sand-ish wader on The Lead Stone with a couple of Oyks was probably one, but that was almost the only interest to find. There were also a few scoter off by the oyster farm - and yes you're going to get blobbed as a matter of principle - but before that you can have some nice waxcaps;

Hygrocybe persistens

Fibrous Waxcap

Meadow Waxcap

Ok, here we go...

Count the Spot the Blobs Scoter

Count the blobs Guillemots

Perhaps not as full an examination as I'd have liked, but time was pressing, as I had a very important commitment to fulfil.

Also, cake was involved.

[[Yes, I provided it. Not entirely mercenary, you know!]]

And after that, lunch was... Somewhat further south.

But that's coming up in the next exciting** installment of
Baaaaaaaaaackwaaaaaard Biiiiiiirdiiiiiing!!

[[[No, I have no idea where that came from, either...]]]

Be Seeing You...

[[* The Fieldfares, not the birders, who were Mr and Mrs Peregrine]]
[[** It will get exciting.     Er, a bit more exciting.  If you like bad photos of half-decent birds, anyway.]]

26 November, 2021

Just Another Patchy Post

After shamefully neglecting the Nose the previous weekend, I gave it both mornings. The even more neglected Patch got more on Sunday, with me wandering around to the Harbour, in defiance of howling northerly wind, blazing Sun, and hordes of mundanes...

But to Saturday, when I was delighted to find -  No, not a good bird, remember where we are! - not only the Teacher, Mr and Mrs Peregrine, but the Veteran, back from an NHS-mandated break in birding.

The birds weren't exactly up to the standard of the company, but the marine life and fungi tried their best to make up the difference.

Parrot Waxcap
Macaw level colours!  :D

Offshore, Common Dolphins, Bluefin Tuna [and Harbour Porps I couldn't get on] were very distant but spectacular when you were lucky enough to catch one breaching!
Onshore, a dozen Redwing were flying around, and Blackbird numbers were markedly up. A Firecrest called in the Top Dell for a while, but did not feel like showing [see above, re: hoolie]

I did pretty well with fungi after we went our ways, and yes, that's what you're getting,

Foetid Parachute

Nitrous Waxcap
[late, but delayed by warm weather and
late Bracken cut]

Butter Waxcap

Ivory Waxcap

Cedarwood Waxcap

Sulphur Tuft

Fleecy Milkcap

Sunday started with a blown-out sunny Nose [though at least 13 Oyks visible, and the two Purple Sands moved at the wrong time to evade me :) ] with markedly fewer Blackbirds. 2 Mipits only likely migrants.
I then progressed about the Patch in a mostly fruitless search for anything much until I got to the Real Living Coast, where at least 5 Purple Sand and 9 Turnstone were mostly foraging out of sight [due to low tide]
Purple Sandpiper
Still the best place to see them pretty much anywhere. :)

Looking to sea, I was very surprised by a head-on fully-out-the-water Bluefin Tuna breaching off Hollicombe!!! From Haldon Pier it was in line with Paignton Harbour - that's close inshore....

Even closer in, 2 grebe sp. were tight off Torre Abbey, but they weren't feeling obliging [despite being statistically near-certain GC] and to rule out Slav I legged it round, only for them to have been flushed off [I hate speedboats] before I got there. Drat.

Got some exercise and at least tried to find something interesting.

Oh well and so on.

Be Seeing You...

23 November, 2021

Looking Down, Listening Up... Again.

After gaining vengeance against Pectoral Sandpipers everywhere, I went for a wander with the Folks about Fernworthy.

In defiance of all reasonable likelihood, the weather was better than forecast and we had a most enjoyable time.  :)

Birds were a little thin on the ground, though audible flyovers were far more frequent. Visible flyovers were resticted to, well, this handsome devil;

Yes, that's a moult centre

And this handsome devil;

Sometimes I really dislike Rushes

A large group of Crossbill were heard a couple of times; enough to generate sleighbells, and Siskin also flew invisibly by. On the reservoir, a handful of LBBs, 2 Tufty and 22 Mallard were all I could see.

And now... :D

Hit the fungi!

[[When I could find them, that is. Large areas barren of fungi, with most of these in only a couple of [harder to reach?] areas. Odd...]]

Dead Man's Finger

Growing out of fallen wood, note texture [it's supposed to be white inside].

Dead Moll's Finger

Much smoother-looking, also growing from a fallen branch. [Looks quite like the 'earthtongue' from Venford Mine?]


Again, smoother, compared to the almost netted appearance of Dead Man's. Also a little flattened.


Slightly brighter [if a little battered].

Very possibly a very
odd-looking Scarlet Waxcap?

Aniseed Funnel

Armillaria ostoyae

Velvet Shank
[bit old]

Ochre Brittlegill

Brick Tufts

Sulphur Tufts

Girdled Webcap
and mass of
Common Jellyspot

Grooved Bonnet

Yellowleg Bonnet

And finally, for some variety, a late-flying resident took a rest on my leg;

Platycheirus scutatus
or thereabouts

Be Seeing You...

21 November, 2021

Just When You Thought You Were Safe From Marauding Moffs...

Behold, unseasonably warm weather has given a late flush of arthropods around my place;
Bloxworth Snout

Common Marbled Carpet

November Moth

Feathered Thorn

Worn Bloxworth Snout?

Rusty-dot Pearl

Double-striped Pug

Interesting Ladybird
on my car

Definitely a male!
Running Crab Spider

Having a new friend for dinner,
Missing Sector Orb Web Spider

Soldier Beetle sp.

Bugs bugs help...

Hmm, don't they know it's November? [Well, the November Moth probably does!] I guess that's climate change and so on.

Be Seeing You...

17 November, 2021

Holne At Last! Pt.2, Winter Is Coming

I've told you about all the fun I had up above Holne - Holne Lee, Holne Moor, and the Mardle valley - but I haven't included a lot of the pictures I took. Not the birds, as you will [painfully] recall, I didn't have much joy; flyovers and close range surprises are like that...

I did find a few other things, and oh yes, it's another post full of frickin' fungi..!!!!!!

[It's that time of year. Get over it]

And the title? Well, I was delighted to find these, you see;

Geoglossum cookeanum?

Which I thought at the time were Dead Man's Fingers [or more accurately Dead Moll's Fingers] and I'm sure you get the reference...

I looked them up in the Big White Book and, well, perhaps Earthtongue seems to fit better. But I'm not dropping my title!

Another angle;

Not flattened, so maybe DM'sF after all??
[Could be on buried wood, tree right there]

This was a Venford Mine, a great site for Autumn fungi and Summer ticks..! [Yikes]

Speaking of the former;

Hygrocybe reidii

Butter Waxcap

H. persistens

Dusky Puffball

Panaeolus papilionaceus

Black Milking Bonnet

I think that's enough to be going on with.

Be Seeing You...