Sunday, 10 April 2011

Emperor of the Fell amongst the Bees

Tried a bit of Sallowing last night, that using a torch, a stick and catching the moths that drop in a upturned umbrella. Did get 15 moths of 5 species including my first Parsnip Moth of year.

 672 Parsnip Moth (Depressaria heraclei) 1
2179 Pine Beauty (Panolis flammea) 1
2182 Small Quaker (Orthosia cruda) 4
2187 Common Quaker (Orthosia cerasi) 4
2190 Hebrew Character (Orthosia gothica) 5

It's not easy as I find the light makes the moth fly off and if I shade it, I can't see what I'm doing. More experimentation required I feel.

With the weather remaining warm I had a few hours on the fell basically looking for Emperor Moth. I saw three, well three sightings but never got close enough for any photographs. Also had four Orange Underwing, but the same, never came down low enough for a picture.
Still good numbers of butterflies around, nothing new but I did see 12+ Peacocks and 4 Orange-tips, also a fair few Bee-Flies
Bee Fly - I love these critters
plus dozens of Seven-spot Ladybirds as  more Tawny Mining Bees. No Oil Beetles but I'm still looking. Also added my first Early Bumblebee (Bombus pratorum) to the year list along with the 3 species I've already seen. No Common Carder Bee yet.

Bumblebees - Red-tailed (top), White-tailed (middle)
and Early (lower)
There were quite a few Hoverflies out, mainly over the Heather and Bilberry. The only ones I saw well enough to id. and that includes three I managed to net,  were all the same species, Eristalis arbustorum though there were at least two other species involved.

The best sighting of the day were 2 Wheatear at Daisy Hill, but not much else in the way of birds. Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler and Blackcap are all getting established now. Continuing my strange Chiffchaffs, one today in South Burn Woods was song flighting, not like Wood Warbler which starts singing on the wing, and then finishes the song when it lands but gliding/fluttering through the trees continuously singing 'Chiff-chaff' .  What's happening with these birds, or is it I'm just taking more notice. The only other birds of note were a vocal Green Woodpecker, single Sparrow-hawk and Kestrel, the ever present Willow Tits and at least 4 pairs of Linnet in territory.
Only Common (Field) Forget-me-not  as new on the flower front, though a small patch of Wood Forget-me-not reminded me I forgot about mentioning this yesterday.

1 comment:

  1. I`ve been looking for Bee Flies for years on my patch, but i`ve yet to find one.

    If you do find the perfect way for Sallowing, please let me know. I might give it a go.