Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Butterflies and Spider(s)

I spent yesterday catching up on some Butterflies on the North Coast. I started at Holkham and had good views of up to ten White Admiral, as well as two White-letter Hairstreak, which started together on the same flower head. Time was restricted, so I only ventured to the Washington Hide, but a fly through Fritillary seemed to be Dark Green, due to size and dark appearance on the underwing! I also managed to find and photograph a brief Hummingbird Hawkmoth. A Painted Lady was seen as I checked out a Chalkhill Blue site (early, but then again, so many butterflies have been), but no Blues at all. From here I visited Holt Country Park, where the damaged Silver-washed Fritillary showed well.
Some picture highlights can be seen here: http://mickeymouseinsects.blogspot.com/
Later in the day a single Silver-studded Blue was found (but disappeared before any pictures - I have trouble finding these :)) and some interesting interaction was noted in some Common Blues (can anyone explain the 'dots' on the male?)
Overall, twenty species of Butterfly were noted at four sites - not a bad haul!

Birding highlights included Hobby, Woodlark and this colour-ringed Dartford Warbler:

Tuesday 28th June:
Today I found myself with a couple of hours to spare in the S-SE of the county and decided to visit Reedham and Lopham Fen, with the aim of seeing Raft Spiders. Although run by Suffolk Wildlife Trust, most of the reserve is in Norfolk (the River Waveney being the county border), including the Raft Spider viewing platform, where a single spider was seen. 

Also noted was this Common Lizard

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Sunday, 26 June 2011

Local Mega: Bee Orchid

Yes, that is Bee Orchid! Bee-eater would have been more preferable, but still a 'first' for me at this site (actually, I can't remember seeing them at all before - not having gone out of my way and/or not knowing what I am looking at!)

... and whilst I'm at it here's some more pretty flowers!

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Friday, 24 June 2011

Dry Red-foots or should that be Feet?

Don't blame me for the title it was Julian's e-mail subject when he sent me these!

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Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Perseverance Pays

I finally caved and decided to make the trip over to Horsey to try and see the long-staying 1st summer male Red-footed Falcon. With recent reports suggesting that it was an afternoon bird (even late afternoon arrival - which would be too late for me!), I decide to go local first thing and then a little shopping :) This was rudely interrupted by a pager message saying it was present today at 9.45. I started to make my way over and, when turning towards Martham, was greeted with a message saying, still present at 10.15 then flew SW! I continued to the Nelson Head track. A Cuckoo posed distantly and a juv Little Egret gave to wonderings as to where it had 'come from'.A male Stonechat was quickly left as it carried food into the scrub.
Non-avian highlights were present in the form of many Dark Green Fritillaries (as well as Small Heath) - resplendent in their emergent colours.
Pictures here: http://mickeymouseinsects.blogspot.com/2011/06/dark-green-fritillary.html
and the above pictured Orchid (wish I knew how to identify them! Anyone?) A couple of Grey Seal were loafing around off shore, one being very approachable (but not by me)!

Hope was waning (the weather was deteriorating - breezy with the occasional light shower) when I decided to plonk down in the dunes. Keeping an eye on the time, knowing I needed to leave c1.30 pm, I got to 1.00 pm and forlornly took another look over the fields - and there, flying in from the north, only c 50 m inland was the fine Red-footed Falcon. It circled the main track, looking to land, but settled further south due to walkers. It is a very approachable bird and preened away about 20 m from me (always back on, unfortunately) before flying to the sparse bushes as a heavy shower set in. We both took shelter and when I returned the bird had disappeared, presumably flushed - by the feeding cows!

The pictures don't do the bird, the views or the area justice, but time had beaten me. I couldn't refind it over the next 50 min (although it showed well again later).

On the ensuing journey a roadside Little Owl actually had the courtesy to remain in situ whilst I turned the car and repositioned myself!

Great when the birds identify their location for you!

Contact: E-mail: dnorgate21@googlemail.com Mobile: 07749779149

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Out and About

I am still getting out and about, honest! A variety of reasons are affecting proper Blog posts, but hopefully, things will return to normal soon :) Until then:

Spotted Flycatcher at Lopham and Reedham Fen. Still not sure if this is in Norfolk or not!

Common Tern aggressively seeing off a Sparrowhawk, even though the terns do not breed that locally!

 Nice to have locally bred Oystercatchers!

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