Sunday, 12 June 2016

Common Blues

Lade - Saturday - Humid, dry, cloudy, e 2 - Yesterday was perfect weather conditions for carrying out a butterfly transect, being muggy with light airs and milky sunshine poking through from time to time. The walk along the old railway line track from the quarry to the aerial mound (about 800yds) delivered 52 Common Blues on the wing, plus 12 Small Heaths and two Painted Ladies. I couldn't resist a few more close up pics of an exquisite Bee Orchid. 

                                Common Blues, Lade

                                Bee Orchid, Lade

Sunday - warm, cloudy, rain, sw 2  - A fresher feel to the weather this morning with the wind swinging round to the south-west and rain on the way. However, there was a decent catch of 21 species of macro moths in the garden trap, but only Buff-tip new for the year.
  A circuit of the site revealed little of note apart from Reed and Cetti`s Warbler chicks out of the nest, plus a 1st summer Little Gull hawking insects over north lake amongst a flock of Black-headed Gulls, plus a few Swifts and House Martins. Along the foreshore 15 Curlews and 25 Oystercatchers were present, while a trickle of Sandwich Terns and Med Gulls passed overhead.
  I haven't quite worked out what`s been predating the waterfowl hereabouts as very few ducklings, cootlets and the like have fledged; the Great Crested Grebes pictured below the exception. Mink have not been seen here for many years, so I don't think they`re the culprits. It may be weather related of course, what with the recent cold periods and some of the torrential downpours flooding nests. Maybe repeat broods will be more successful.
  All the `No Fishing` signs erected by RSPB have now gone missing and several fisherman were in the usual swims around the lakes and in the willow swamp.

                                1st summer Little Gull, Lade north

                                Great Crested Grebe family, Lade south


  1. We have the same scarcity of ducklings and plover chicks here on The Swale NNR, rather feel that it is weather related. Clearly the RSPB have a fight on their hands with the fishermen and you rather suspect that it will be an on-going thing.

  2. Yes, I`m beginning to think the lack of juvs is weather related too. As for fishermen, we have the full range at Lade from competition anglers in boats after monster carp, to gangs netting for food at night time. Not easy to police, but hopefully the message will eventually get through.