Friday, 25 July 2014

24-07-14 Stanwell Moor

A late morning visit in sunny, hot conditions provided another opportunity to photograph Butterflies, Dragonflies and Damselflies.

                                                                 Meadow Brown.

                                                                  Small Copper.


                                                                       Small Heath.

                                                                Ruddy Darter (female).

                                                           Banded Demoiselle (male).

A pair of Linnet put in a brief appearance and I manged to get a shot of the male bird before they both flew off.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Maple Lodge Nature Reserve & Lynsters Farm

An afternoon visit in hot conditions was not ideal but despite the heat and time of day I saw plenty to keep me occupied. Passing the plantation I stopped briefly to have a look at the Sparrowhawk nest that is now very difficult to see through the dense foliage. I was chuffed to bits to see at least one juvenile at the nest and it even stretched its fledgling wings for me. I then continued to the sluice where I noted a mating pair of Common Blue Damselfly.

I then continued to the Long Hedge and meadow where many butterflies were noted on the wing including Meadow Brown, Gatekeeper, Peacock, Comma and Small White. Nearing the jubilee Oak I noticed a small species of Butterfly feeding on Viper's Bugloss. I managed to capture a few shots and on closer inspection realised it was a male Essex Skipper my first for the reserve. Similar to Small Skipper the species has a diagnostic black underside to antennal tip.

I then spent some time in the Long Hedge Hide where I noted the resident pair of Great Crested Grebe present at the nest, their second of the year. Although I could not see inside the nest I had been told that there are eggs present and that the juvenile from the first brood is still in the area too.

A total of four broods of Tufted Duck were observed from the hide and I manged to photograph a female as she paused briefly.

I then decided to head off to Lynsters Hide passing through the paddock where I spotted the remains of a probable Sparrowhawk kill. On close inspection of the remaining feathers I think the prey was probably a juvenile Green Woodpecker. Some of the emerging feathers were only just budding from the quills and a green hue was visible. I organised some of the feathers to photograph.

On reaching the hide I noted a total of 38 Greylag Goose, 11 Canada Goose and a single Cackling Goose that is of presumed captive origin present at Lynsters Farm.    

                                          A record shot of the Cackling Goose at Lynsters Farm.

I then made my way back to the clubhouse passing the sluice where I photographed a Small White and Brimstone butterfly feeding on thistle.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Stockers Lake

During a late afternoon visit I discovered two Common Sandpiper at rest on the tern raft from the Tern Hide. Later one of the birds left the raft and began to feed on the floating algae that has appeared in that area of the lake. Other species worth a mention included a Common Kingfisher that flashed by briefly, two Little Egret at the heronry and a pair of Eurasian Oystercatcher noted feeding a juvenile on a very small island.