Sunday, 1 May 2011

Mayday sightings

It dropped to 5.9C overnight but had been sunny yesterday so I put the moth trap out, though a little later than usual. Four moths present this morning. Singles of Shuttle-shaped Dart, Hebrew Character, Cabbage Moth and Heart & Dart. The latter two are both common summer moths but both were not only my first of the year but my earliest ever.

Heart & Dart

Cabbage Moth

 The most interesting moth was the Hebrew Character as it had me foxed for a while. It was a very small individual and the black markings were not the usual shape.

An unusual looking Hebrew Character

Today I walked through the village and along the Cong Burn exiting at Pelton Fell, checking Tribley farm ponds on the way.
Talking to a dog walker in the woods he said two people were here the other day looking for a specific bird but left unsuccessful. I wonder what (and who) that was?  The Grasshopper Warbler and a couple of Garden Warblers were singing as I passed the village but no sign of yesterday's Lesser Whitethroat. Several Swifts flew over here too and a Willow Tit called right by the nursery entrance, the first I've had for a couple of weeks.  The woods held the usual warblers but nothing out of the ordinary. I had hoped for a wader at the farm ponds but was out of luck when I checked. 2 Canada Geese, 2 Mute Swan and 3 Grey Lag were present however.

Tribley farm pond with feral Canada & Grey Lag Geese

As I got closer, 2 year ticks in very quick succession, first a Sedge Warbler was singing and then a Yellow Wagtail got up and called but unfortunately flew off.
I picked up a few more common flowering plants as I walked back through the Cong Burn woods, Red Clover, Cock's-foot grass, Wood Dock, Hedge Mustard, Petty Spurge, Scentless Mayweed and Herb-robin.

Herb-Robin one of the Cranesbill family

Then back in time for Sunday lunch.

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