Thursday 28 August 2014

Avocets, Black-tailed Godwits and Swallows

Avocets, Recurvirostra avosetta
The past two days I have been dodging the cloud bursts. I visited the Sand Martin hide at Arundel WWT on Tuesday. As soon as I arrived the kingfisher landed on a low post in front of the hide, saw me move, then flew off.
Yesterday I visited Pagham Harbour at Church Norton and the RSPB area. The Sidlesham Ferry Pool had Avocets and Black-tailed Godwits which came close to the road. Swallows were feeding over the harbour water and a large flock of cormorants were grouped on the distant sand.
Arundel WWT:
Canada Geese, Branta canadensis
Common Sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos
Ferry Pool, Pagham Harbour:
Avocets, Recurvirostra avosetta
Avocet, Recurvirostra avosetta

Black-tailed Godwit, Limosa limosa

on bench in graveyard at St Wilfrid's Chapel, Church Norton:
female Common Darter, Sympetrum striolatum
female Common Darter, Sympetrum striolatum

female Common Darter, Sympetrum striolatum
RSPB reserve, Pagham Harbour:
Greenfinches, Carduelis chloris
Greenfinch, Carduelis chloris
Greenfinches, Carduelis chloris
Pagham Harbour, Church Norton area:
Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Little Egret, Egretta garzetta

Swallows, Hirundo rustica

Swallow, Hirundo rustica

Monday 25 August 2014

Sand Martins visit Arundel

Sand Martin, Riparia riparia
On Thursday I did a butterfly survey for Arundel WWT as part of their bioblitz: Green-veined White 1, Meadow Brown 10, Red Admiral 2, Small White 1, Small Tortoiseshell 1, Speckled Wood 14, Clouded Yellow 1, Common Blue 8. There were several dragonflies and a damselfly. A Common Sandpiper walked in front of the Sand Martin hide. 
  I also received my new moccasins in the post. The old ones finally gave up after decades of comfy service. I found the website for this Lake District company and am delighted with the new ones:

  On Friday morning I received the news that I had prostate cancer (see earlier blog). After lunch I visited Arundel WWT for photography therapy. I was advised that Sand Martins had been visiting the Sand Martin hide in the mornings, sometimes perching on the branches set up in front of the speaker. The speaker broadcasts chick noises which may encourage them to visit the ready-made tunnel nests next year. The old birds and this year’s young are gathering to migrate to warmer climes (I don’t blame them). I decided to return at opening time to try and get some photos. 
  I managed to get some photos of them on Saturday morning. A pair of Common Sandpipers appeared. A Kingfisher flew around the lake several times and perched right in front of the hide at one point. Unfortunately it was in total shade!
  On Sunday I found a 1901 penny and a 1921 halfpenny during a club dig. In the afternoon we visited Arundel WWT and Sue was able to walk to the hide, a great improvement six months after her second knee replacement. She keeps talking about climbing a mountain...
old and new
old female Black-tailed Skimmer, Orthetrum cancellatum
male Black-tailed Skimmer, Orthetrum cancellatum
Blue-tailed Damselfly, Ischnura elegans
Clouded Yellow, Colias croceus
Common Darter, female, Sympetrum striolatum
Common Evening-Primrose, Oenorthera biennis
Common Sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos
Corn Mint, Mentha arvensis or
Whorled Mint (Mentha arvensis x aquatica = M. x verticillata)
Dock Leaf, Rumex obtusifolius
Purple Loosestrife, Lythrum salicaria
Small Tortoiseshell, Aglais urticae
Friday's therapy session:
view from Sand Martin hide
Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Common Sandpiper, Actitis hypoleucos

pair of Common Sandpipers, Actitis hypoleucos 
Kingfisher, Alcedo atthis
Sand Martin, Riparia riparia

Sunday afternoon:
Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
Mute Swan, Cygnus olor