Nature Notes #10

Nature Notes #10

Sparky’s mum was gardening today and found this little beauty chomping away through the fuchsias and correctly identified it as an Elephant Hawk Moth larva. Apparently named for it’s resemblance to an elephant’s trunk. I think it’s got a more reptilian look about it. Anyway, an impressive beast and active during this period so keep an eye open for them on willow-herb and fuchsias or when you’re tending to your herbaceous borders .

A link below for more information on the species.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deilephila_elpenor

Elephant Hawk Moth Larva. All images by WSM

29.08.12. Birdlog

29.08.12. Birdlog

A juvenile Red-rumped Swallow over the south-west corner of No 6 tank at 5.40 pm moved through to the west (Greg Baker). A long-expected addition to the marsh list.  Well done to Greg the finder! We’ll let him discribe his find himself

Hi Bill – shame the swallow wasn’t seen again. I last saw it heading west over the south embankment of No 4 but had great views of it over the SW corner of No 6, if only for a minute or two. GB.

4 Ruddy Shelduck, 400 Common Teal were observed feeding on the extensive flooded water on No 6 tank. 2 Turnstone, 45 Ringed Plover,1 Green Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank and a single Ruff. 40+ Pied/White and 2 Yellow Wagtails, 600 mixed flock of Swallow, House Martin and smaller numbers of Sand Martin feeding over No 6 – No4 tank, 50+ Swifts moving ahead of the deluge this evening.

A juvenile Marsh Harrier on Lordship Marsh

Observers: Greg Baker, Mark Payne, Arthur Harrison, Frank Duff, WSM

28.08.12 Birdlog.

28.08.12. Birdlog

Morning Watch: 4 Ruddy Shelduck, 3 Little Ringed Plover, 18 Ringed Plover, 12 Dunlin, 1 Common Sandpiper, 3 Black-tailed Godwit and 1 Greenshank all on No 6 tank. Also a Peregrine and 2 Wheatears on No 5 tank.

Observer: Mike Turton

Evening Watch: 2 Hobby, one eating a large dragonfly, moved off to the west. 4 Ruddy Shelduck, 1 Greenshank, 3 Common Sandpiper and 4 Yellow Wagtail on No 6 tank, 1 Wheatear on No 5 tank and a male Marsh Harrier over No 4 tank..

Observers: Arthur Harrison, Mark Payne, WSM

4 Black-tailed Godwit on No 6 tank this evening contained a colour ringed bird (see details below for its origin). The colour ring was Green over White above the left knee and Orange over Yellow flag over the right knee.

E-mail: A juvenile Black-tailed Godwit present on 22nd August on No 6 tank was ringed as a chick (GW+OY) on 13th July 2012 near Dalvik, N Iceland a big chick 208g. It is now in NW England and is one of c110 godwit chicks colour-ringed in July. It has been an excellent breeding season for BtG’s in Iceland this summer.

Many thanks for the record and photo very useful and great to know it has made it south from Iceland ok.

Extracts from an e-mail from Peter Potts and Jenny Gill

27.08.12. Birdlog

27.08.12. Birdlog

4-6 Ruddy Shelduck on No 6 tank were present until dusk. Good numbers of both Ringed Plover and Dunlin continue to roost and feed on No 6 tank.  Male Marsh Harrier over No 4 tank where a Green Sandpiper was located on a fresh water pool.

A Sparrowhawk and 150 Swifts were noted over No 5 tank. A Wheatear and 3 Yellow Wagtail along Lordship Marsh Lane.

Observers: Paul Crawley, Frank Duff. WSM.

4-6 Ruddy Shelduck on No 6 tank, additionally two of the birds had dark heads and were of dubious origins. The weather today was wet and windy so a good look at these birds tomorrow might shed some light on their parentage?

Ruddy Shelduck/Egyptain Goose  hybrid. Bucks Bird Club. Tristan Folland

26.08.12. Birdlog

26.08.12. Birdlog

2 Ruddy Shelduck, 3 Turnstone,  200 mixed Dunlin and Ringed Plover, 2 Green Sandpiper, 62 Redshank, 1 Greenshank on No 6 tank. 10 Wheatears, 2 Swift on No 5 tank. Water Rail chick at the usual location .

Observers: Paul Crawley and Frank Duff.

Turnstone on No 6 tank. Image by WSM.

Evening Watch: 2 Ruddy Shelduck, 130 Ringed and a single juvenile Little Ringed Plover, 1 Turnstone, 95 Dunlin, Greenshank and 27 Redshank. 10 Shoveler and 150 Teal. A juvenile Marsh Harrier perched on the ground hiding behind the Michaelmas Daisy clumps. 140 Cormorants on No 6 tank. All reports from No 6 tank. 200 Curlew on No 5 tank.

Observer: Arthur Harrison, WSM.