Sep 292020
 

I ran a garden moth trap overnight on 28th September – results as follows in no particular order:-

Setaceous Hebrew Character 1; Brimstone Moth 3; Black Rustic 3; Lesser Yellow Underwing 3; Large Yellow Underwing 5; Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing 1 (female); Lunar Underwing 9; The Snout 1; Shuttle-shaped Dart 2; Red-green Carpet 1; Common Marbled Carpet 2; Pale Mottled Willow 2; Riband Wave 1; Willow Beauty 2; Light Emerald 1; Epiphyas postvittana (Light Brown Apple Moth) 1; Eudonia Mercurella 1:  17 species / 39 moths

Black Rustic
Red-green Carpet
Light Emerald
Snout
Snout
 Posted by at 9:39 am
Sep 112020
 

I ran a garden moth trap overnight 10th September. The results are as follows in no particular order:-

Palpita vitrealis (Olive-tree Pearl) 1 (5th county record); Vine’s Rustic 1; Centre-barred Sallow 1; Large Yellow Underwing 13; Lesser Yellow Underwing 16; Square-spot Rustic 1; Lunar Underwing 7; Willow Beauty 1; Garden Carpet 3; Mouse Moth 1; Common Marbled Carpet 2:  11 species / 47 moths

Palpita vitrealis (Olive-tree Pearl) the second one I’ve trapped in my garden
Vine’s Rustic
Centre-barred Sallow
Common Marbled Carpet
Lunar Underwing
 Posted by at 11:26 am
Sep 092020
 

As the Lammergeier has been fairly site faithful to a 5 square mile area of Crowden during the past couple of months or so, I decide to have another trip for it today.

A stunning morning but alas she came off her roost early, being spoofed by a Peregrine apparently. I just managed to arrive in time to see her soaring over the valley before heading off towards Longdendale ridge, eventually disappearing out of sight.

I walked back up a second time around mid-day but no further sign during an hours watching. At least 20+ Ring Ouzel, feeding on Rowan berries, several Coal Tits and calling Chiffchaff, several Kestrel and Common Buzzard, a Goshawk and hundreds of House Martins. 

Ring Ouzel – Good numbers of juveniles – Maybe a good breeding season?
The early morning sun just catching her bill
The tail is now really filling out well – soon be looking wedge-shaped
What a size contrast with the Magpie
Common Buzzard
 Posted by at 7:27 pm
Sep 052020
 

A stunning male Red-backed Shrike has been faithful to a site at Sutton Park, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands for just over a week now.

Red-backed Shrikes are very rare inland, so to have one within an hours drive of home was too good a chance to miss. I took the following photographs on 4th September 2020. A Common Redstart also made a brief appearance during my time watching the shrike.

Red-backed Shrike tends to be coastal migrant and turns up regularly in early autumn after seasonal easterly winds. They are known as “Drift Migrants” and their arrival is a sure sign that autumn is on its way. Most of the Red-backed Shrikes that arrive on our shores in autumn are from Scandinavia and eastern Europe. They get blown off track as they make their long journey to southern climates to spend the winter. Adult birds usually migrate first, then later in the autumn, the younger birds tend to be more frequently seen.

Often call “The Butcher Bird” due to the birds habit of impaling its prey on thorns or barbed wire, creating a so called larder, storing food for future use. 

 

Red-backed Shrike – male – Sutton Park, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands.
Common Redstart – immature
 Posted by at 8:52 pm
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