Friday, 19 March 2010

Small Brindled Beauty

I thought it might be interesting to try the Moth trap in early spring this year -something I've not tried before. Under a misty overcast sky and very mild temperatures to the constant sound of Redwings migrating through, I recorded this interesting moth. Originally, I thought this was a Brindled beauty, but checking my field guides carefully, I beIieve this to be the smaller and similar Small Brindled Beauty. It has a metallic brass sheen to its wings which vaguely recalls the Burnished Brass recorded elsewhere on my blog. I think my images could have been better as it looked a prettier Moth in the hand. Still, there's plenty of nights ahead to practice.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Chiffchaff - first spring migrant

Much warmer and milder weather today, (with a SW westerly breeze to), brought in a Chiffchaff to the garden. It was singing from the Larch at the front of the house this afternoon. Its our first summer migrant of the spring.

Monday, 15 March 2010

14 degrees good-bye winter?

Sunday and today have seen a big leap in sunshine and temperature. Spring is now warm enough for the first visits down the garden of the Brimestone butterfly - ( unfortunately to quick for me to photograph). They are also accompanied by basking Peacock Butterflies interested in nothing more than a spot of sun bathing. Bees are here to, on the hunt for nectar rich plants and catkins, but as yet there isn't too much in flower to feed on. In our garden the Sallows always provide early spring blossom but will not be in full flower for another week yet.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Winter light on Blue Tit

After late February's cold and relentlessy wet weather we now have bitterly cold but sunny March days. The wind is from the North and the threat of a snow flurry never far away. Still, at least we are now getting some sunshine and on the continent they really are still in the grip of winter. My son George, returned from Koblenz today, and there was freshly fallen thick snow in Germany and Belgium.

Back in the garden - spring is trying to show signs of promise. My first Bumble Bee was seen yesterday, Chaffinches and Blackbirds are battling over territories, a pair of Robins exchange centipedes strengthening the bond and the pond has plenty of Newt activity.

Blue Tits have started to return and rebuild last year's nests in the boxes. Having now depleted the hedgerows of berries, Redwings and Fieldfares in the pasture field, are now fattening up on Earthworms in readiness for their Northward bound return to Scandinavia and Russia. Interestingly our 'garden' Fieldfare is still very much with us, feasting on a 'gift' apple a day at the bottom of the garden.

Redwings foraging in the pasture field

Fieldfares are numerous in the pasture field at the moment, but I think this bird is still the same one that has been visiting for Apples since Christmas.