Sunday, 13 August 2017

Butterfly transect drama

 The plan was for Jacob and I to do our North Otmoor butterfly survey this morning. Considering the weather was perfect for butterflies there were surprisingly few around- highlight was this Small Copper. There were more dragonflies around than butterflies. Had Brown Hawker, Southern and Migrant Hawker and Ruddy and Common Darter. 
 Male Ruddy Darter I do believe
 A young Common Darter I strongly suspect 
 A few migrants in the Blackthorn hedge included this young Redstart and I'm also pretty sure I heard a Spot Fly call but couldn't locate it- also a few Whitethroats, Lesser Whitethroat and Chiffys. 
 and then a few steps later this male Redstart popped up- maybe a family party around? 
 Then I suddenly caught sight of a raptor being mobbed by the Red Kites. At that precise moment Jacob started kicking off ( I had him in a holder on my chest) because he wanted some milk. I discovered it was impossible to reason with a 4 and a half month old baby and the basis of  'I could have a bloody Pallid here so wait and stay still' 
I managed to get a couple of shots which (on later inspection) look like most probably the 2nd calender year male Hen Harrier that has been around moulting its outer primaries giving it the impression of restricted black in the wing tip. 
 Presumed Second-calender year male Hen Harrier 
 By now Jacob was going into proper milk demon mode so I knew I had to get the milk out but just as I was about to, the Red Kites were onto something else- a bloody Osprey! I managed to knock out about three shots before I had to sort poor little chap out. 

 I think the milk demon summonsed up a herd of cows because next thing I knew is we were being stampeded by a herd of dairy so literally had to run and jump over a fence with baby on front, clip board in hand, camera on one shoulder, bins on other and baby man bag on back with jeans that were beginning to fall down so restricting the gait on the hurdle. I made it despite the odds! 
And alls well that ends well. Had a few more Buzzards going over.

Ebird list here


Badger said...

Hi Peter, congrats on your Osprey, great birds wherever you see them,
May I lift your Osprey pics to accompany your goingbirding/Oxonbirding
post please?

Kind Regards

Jason (admin for Oxonbirding)

Peter Alfrey said...

Hi Jason,
yes please do.
All the best

Badger said...

Many Thanks Peter.