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Sunday, 26 June 2016
Had the associate members summer bird and wildlife walk today. We covered the south mound, had a look at the north and south lagoon, the northern and the southern lakes and went towards Home Mead for the Tree Sparrows.
Map by Helen Cavilla
Two distant fly over adult male Ruffs were one of the highlights. There was also a juvenile Peregrine around chasing the gulls. We estimated at least 30 Grey Herons. Also a couple of Pochard, Little Grebe and 2 Cormorants.
We twitched the Tree Sparrows and found this family party-looks like a juvenile on the bottom right so breeding success confirmed! Four pairs this year- an improvement on two pairs last year.
Small Tortoiseshell- a few of these on the mound, also first Essex Skipper of the year, 10+ Small White, 15+ Meadow Brown, 10+ Black-tailed Skimmer, 1 Common Blue and 2 Blue-tailed Damselflies
This migrant Rush Veneer was the first of the year, also Silver Y up there, Garden Grass Veneers and S.Verticalis.
For more details of becoming an associate member of the bird group see here:
Saturday, 25 June 2016
Spent today with niece Izzy who was up for a shopping/ nature combo day out. She blew the day budget by 11am so we went back to the obs to do the moths (another good evening) and then we went over the farmlands for a walk and having a look at the butterflies and day flying moths.
Not many better starts to the day
Marbled White- first for the year. Also increasing numbers of Meadow Brown and Common Blue on the mound. More Silver Ys up there. If the weather is good tomorrow will do an intensive search up on the grassland tomorrow as looks like entomological communities are building now.
Rusty Dot Pearl. First for the year. Other moths new for the year yesterday and day before included Dwarf Cream Wave, Mottled Rustic, Dark Arches, Straw Dot, Grey Tortrix, Bee Moth, Double-striped Pug, C.falsella and Barred Yellow
Friday, 24 June 2016
Did an hour or so on the mound this evening with Christian. The species rich grassland is flowering well now but the wet weather seems to be keeping insects numbers down. A few Black-tailed Skimmers up there looking docile too.
Painted Ladies- at least two to three on the southern mound
At least three Skylarks with one singing
The lakes were well flooded following the recent storms and water was pooling on the mound even attracting water fowl.
The good moth evenings continue. I thought this looked like a Freyer's Pug?
Burnished Brass- first for the year
Light Arches and Coronet- both firsts for the year
Had a Barn Owl in flight calling last night from the bugry window. Presumably one of the birds reported by Tomos on Mill Green recently (tried for them with Martin a couple of days ago but no luck).
Thursday, 23 June 2016
The idea that changes to the centralised political system is the answer to all our problems is pure fantasy (Steve Cutts).
There seems to be a consensus of opinion amongst the environmental community that being within Europe is better for UK nature conservation than being out. Personally I am happy to support this consensus but at the same time keen to make the point that voting is such a tiny and insignificant part of an individuals contribution to the well being of each other and nature. Voting in the political system is almost the least important part of being a citizen in a modern evolving democracy- the most important part is everyday behaviour and engagement within the various streams of ideology within a liberal democracy.
For unity, peace and the environment support each other not the Capitalist Empires (EU or UK).
Nothing better to do than spend more time birding and in nature especially with mates- that's basically life sorted!
A few other ideas:
SUPPORT THE GOOD GUYS
Support the NGO's/ conservation groups who are getting good results.
BE POLITICALLY ACTIVE
Vote with wildlife in mind. Write to your MP about local wildlife issues.(I would add attend local planning meetings and comment on planning applications etc)
REDUCE YOUR ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT
Use less energy, create less waste etc
SPEND YOUR MONEY TO DO GOOD
Support products, services and brands which are doing good. E.g. conservation grade products, organic, high quality local products and services etc
ENGAGE IN DEBATE
Talk, write and social network about nature - tell your friends and spread the word about nature.
INCREASE YOUR ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT
Do some wildlife gardening, volunteer for a conservation organisation, do anything positive
SET UP YOUR OWN CONSERVATION ORGANISATION
Offer wildlife gardening services to other people, buy some land (or get permission) to manage it for wildlife, set up a bird and wildlife tour company to show other people nature. Use profits from any eco-business ventures for conservation. If you manage any land- manage it with wildlife in mind.
STAND UP AGAINST THE BAD GUYS
Let everyone know when an organisation is up to no good- write about it, social network it, protest about it
DISENGAGE FROM NEGATIVE CULTURE
Buy what you need, work only for the good guys (preferably yourself!) don't get caught up in the money mad rat race and then you'll have more time and money to spend on the above
Wednesday, 22 June 2016
Sedge Warbler- an adult bringing food to young free flying birds
Still three Shovelers around- although no sign of any young. Also 6 Teal, 4-5 Gadwall and Pochard. Mute Swans on 100 acre are still sitting on eggs (presumably cold), three young have been lost on the North Lake but all is well on the Southern Lake with six young still.
Four Med Gulls flew over high today- also 1 Green Sandpiper on 100 acre- the autumn movements have started
A Common Tern- another migrant today
Female Mandarin on 100 acre on Jim's Pit
Young Grey Wagtail- another breeding success
Anania perlucidalis- a first for the farmlands (thanks Steve from Surrey Moths for id confirmation). Been pretty good for moths in last few days.
Ephestia unicolorella (left) and something (right)
Barred Fruit-tree Tortrix
Large Red Damselfly- one or two in Gillian's Wildlife Garden
Fly sp- pretty distinctive, the abdomen looked like a lady bird? Gymnosoma rotundatum - new for site?
Ichneumon wasp Amblyteles armatorius
Wetland habitat east of the incinerator- currently being put forward for de-designation from MOL (where will all this end?)
Great Lettuce - I did well encouraging Gillian to keep this growing in her garden- a 'super-sized weed' - about 12ft high. I think it's a brilliant plant but after getting away with it for so long had to follow orders and dig it up.
Prickly Lettuce- similar to the Great Lettuce but basically prickly and not so great
Hairy Tare? Growing on the Bedzed field
Gillians Wildlife Garden - five years on this little bit of habitat is doing well and also aligned with neighbours efforts to improve their patches too- there now a nice little strip in this area. We planted this in 2011: PLANTING GILLIAN'S GARDEN
The new Sutton Council Plan also outlines proposals to re-designate this land. The only area of semi-natural grassland in the SINC.
The bird group wildflower meadow has become an Ox-eye Daisy meadow- plenty of insects feeding on them
Monday, 20 June 2016
Started my bioblitz of Holly's garden. Not the best day for it and pouring down with rain all night and most of the morning so only got a couple of hours in. As suspected some interesting stuff lurking.
Spotted Flycatcher- looks like they are breeding in the garden- at least two birds. Also Goldcrest singing. Great Spotted Woodpecker and Song Thrush holding territory and Kestrel in the paddock.
Red Kites overhead
Brown Rustic in the moth trap last night. The feathered antennae are distinctive as are the white spots along the wing edge (a moth tick for me). Despite the very wet weather (local flooding) had Flame, Common Swift, Chrysoteuchia culmella, Brown House Moth and a couple of caddis.
Syrphus sp- two or three hoverfly species about
Mining bee sp
Plenty of drenched Bumblebees
The garden stream (who has a stream in their garden!)
Some stunning trees in the garden including this Weeping Willow
The veranda garden- plenty of insects in this part of the garden
Bryan's 1972 Morgan recently renovated- some great stuff around the Old Vicarage