Saturday, 27 September 2014

A colourful tip

Today I  checked the the tip, aka the reclaimed waste tip behind Waldridge village. Despite it being nearly October and autumn arriving early this year there was still a good deal of colour about. Nothing of note bird-wise but the Tawny Owls have started to be vocal again and Willow Tits are still around in decent numbers, seen at 4 spots today. This are must be one of the best spots in the north-east for this rapidly declining species. More Nuthatches than usual, were seen, and especially heard, so I reckon must have had a good breeding season

A bit of red.
On many on the Dog Roses, Robin's Pincushion Gall was present. In fact I have never seen as much as today. This is a gall created by a Gall Wasp (Diplolepis rosae) and is created by a chemical produced by the wasp when the eggs are laid on a leaf or bud of the Dog Rose (Rosa canina). The chemical causes the rose to produce this red gall and inside the gall-wasp's eggs hatch and the grubs feed protected by this strange creation, Interestingly, the gall wasp involved is asexual  and less than 1% of the wasps hatching will be males.

A bit of pink.
There are still quite a few plants still in flower at the moment, including Common Centuary whcih is quite common on the old tip here, even though I don't recall seeing it anywhere else in the Waldridge/Chester-le-Street area.

A bit of black (plus a touch of yellow)
Fungi are starting to appear in decent numbers but it's very difficult to find any specimens that have not been attacked by Slugs at the moment. One of the commonest Waxcaps is Hygrocybe nigrescens (Blackening Waxcap), and there were a few of these on the tip today


Blackening Waxcap

A bit (a lot) of Brown
Most of the butterflies we won't see again until next year but Speckled Wood  were still flitting around in decent numbers. I saw 12 at least today, together with a  single Wall Brown.

Speckled Wood (top) and Wall
A bit of gold (hopefully)

Some sun forecast tomorrow .. fingers crossed

Thursday, 4 September 2014

A new moth for me

The moth trap last night contained an Orange Sallow, my first new macro moth for ages.  Also some other uncommon species for the garden, Barred Chestnut, Autumnal Rustic and the micros Lobesia littoralis and Ypsolopha parenthesella as well a a couple migrant Diamond-back Moths and a Silver Y. I'm quite happy with that lot.

Also a new beetle for me Bradycellus ruficollis, which helps my pan-listing attempt on a tiny bit to 2613.

Orange Sallow