Thursday, 28 April 2011

Bit better than I thought

It went down to 1.2C overnight so when I checked the moth trap this morning it was as bad as I expected .... Nothing. Absolutely zero moths. Both Cuckoo and Great spotted Woodpecker calling in the distance were little compensation. With a light but cold northerly and quite a bit of cloud I had little hope for seeing anything today.
After breakfast, a few little jobs in the garden were to be done but stopped when I noticed a moth on one of the windows. A Treble-bar moth, a very early one but which?  It looked a little on the large size but the bar looked more like Lesser, which is the only one I've had here. So I potted it up and checked it thoroughly which in the case of these moths means looking at their 'bits'. It was a male Lesser Treble-bar and beat my earliest by 15 days so another early record breaker. It's been a funny start to the year with so many species being very early.

Lesser Treble-bar
So off onto the fell and a few things flying around but not a lot and it was getting dark at times as some big grey clouds hid the sun for too much of the time. But I did get a pleasant surprise to find a Small Copper almost hiding in the bracken, only my second ever April one.

Small Copper hiding
Nothing new on the bird front, the Swifts and Lesser Whitethroats, in particular, should be here any day now but Lesser Redpolls flew over several times and I suspect they are going to breed again this year after 1-2 years absence. Spent some time watching the hoverflies amongst the Bilberry and several Helophilus pendulus were out,

Helophilus pendulus on Billberry

Also out were a good few Platycheirus albimanus. This is the small black Hoverfly with the big brush like front feet. Very common but it was new for the year as was a Green Tiger Beetle that scurried across the path.

Green Tiger Beetle

A quick check of Wanister Bog for anything new and I managed to find some flowering Heath Woodrush (Luzula multiflora).

Heath Woodrush

So all in all, the day was better than I thought first thing this morning.

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