Saturday, July 29, 2006

Crosby Marina,

An excellent selection of gulls on show today. The 1st summer/2nd winter Ring-billed gull was showing well on the shore. It was present with a 2nd summer yellow- legged gull and an adult mediterranean gull. A juv med gull was present on the boating lake which unfortunately we just missed.

Lets hope it a repeat performance of last years 1stsum/2ndw ring-billed gull which stayed around for most of the autumn and winter.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Prescot reservoirs,
A female emperor was ovipositing on the new pond today. It was on there for at least an hour visiting every available half submerged stalk of vegetation and ovipositing her eggs under the surface of the pond.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Udea lutealis

Shaded broad bar

Sutton Manor,
Lots of shaded broad bars fluttering about in the grasses today. I mistakenly thought a very worn individual was a july belle on Monday. This caused a little ripple in the St Helens mothing fraternity as it would have been a first for the borough.
I didn't realise that yesterdays ruddy darter was the first record of ruddy darter within the borough for seven years and only the 4th ever sighting.
A male Emerald damselfly was a nice find on the top pond today. Also emperor, brown hawker, 4 spotted chaser, broad bodied chaser and lots of common darter.
A female bullfinch, a family of redpolls and a 3 yellowhammers were the best of the birds today.
A couple of other nice micro moths, Udea lutealis and grapholita compositella were recorded.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Ruddy darter
Ruddy darter

Ruddy darter

Southern hawker

Migrant hawker

Bold Moss, St Helens,
I picked Chris Derrie up from prescot reservoirs and off we went in search of emerald damselflies at Bold Moss. I have never been to this site before so Chris could act as tour guide.
Fisrt we found a Migrant hawker hanging in a small Alder, good start. We then went up to the top ponds and on the way we saw willow tit but hearing it first. Plenty of emperors, Brown hawker, 4 spotted chasers, black tailed skimmers , common darters and blue damsels but no emeralds. We then walked around the other side and a southern hawker was hanging in a birch allowing very close approach. A good day so far. We then looked in a small opening in the vegatation onto the pond. I noticed a very red, blood red darter perched not very far away. I said to Chris that we had better check it for red veined or ruddy. We realised it was shorter in lenght, narrow waisted and the legs were totally black, no yellow on the sides of the thorax. It was a ruddy darter. A good day just got better. We never did see the emeralds but we will just have to come back another day.
An Argyresthia brockeella (Micro moth) was seen on a birch tree leaf.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Prescot reservoirs,
Gull numbers up today with 200 black headed gull, 200 lesser bb gul, 40 herring gull and 10 common gull. 80 tufted duck 5 great crested grebe, 10 barnacles 50 canada 2 buzards, 1 kestrel f, 4 stock dove and 2 common sands.
A southern hawker was present briefly at the new pond today. Also brown hawker, 2 black tailed skimmers m+f,2 broad bodied chasers m+f and 2 common darters. 10 common blue damselflies.

P.S. 1adult 1juv little grebe on Saturday

Monday, July 17, 2006

Sutton Manor,
This a great place for a stroll on a summers morning. Its not bad for the dragonflies and butterflies either.
3 male emperors
2 brown hawkers
2 4 spotted chasers
2 common darters
common blue damsel
azure damsel
blue tailed damsel

lots of gatekeepers
lots of meadow browns
small skipper
large skipper
green veined whites
large white

Shaded broad bar
silver y
pale bordered 5 spot burnet

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Prescot Reservoirs,
The first returning snipe was back in the ranch pond today present with a common sand. 4 common sands were on the reserviors. A 1st summer mediterranean gull on the causeway seen by Billy Harrison early morning. This was also present on Thursday. An adult common tern flew in mid morning. A kingfisher flew right over our heads on the causeway, the blue and orange gleaming in the bright sunlight.
A juv sand martin was on the perimeter fence with 8 juv swallows. A mixed flock of 20 linnets 20 goldfinch and 6 greenfinch with many juvs amongst them was also on the fence.
The gull numbers are building up with 80 black headed, 8 common gull, 30 herring, and 60 lesser bb gull and 1 great bb gull.
A painted lady, a very big small tortoiseshell, lots of meadow browns, gatekeeper,4 green veined white, small skipper and a red admiral.
1 broad bodied chaser.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Conwy RSPB
A quick visit to conwy rspb today to see a first for Wales and myself. A Stilt sandpiper was showing extremely well from the visitors centre . This American calidrid was in first summer plumage.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Prescot reservoirs,
Only 2 common sandpipers today after yesterdays amazing 28. The 2 juvenile stonechats were still on the north fence by the ranch pond.7 oystercatchers were on the causeway.
Butterflies today included a Comma, gatekeeper, large skipper and meadow brown

Saturday, July 08, 2006

22 of the 28 common sandpipers today

Prescot reservoirs,
An amazing arrival of returning common sandpipers. There were 28 present this morning around no3 and 4 reservoirs. Nearby at Eccleston mere an excellent 12 were present. 2 juvenile stonechats were new on the north fence.
Also today,
1 sand martin
50 swift
20 house martins
5 swallow
54 tufted duck and 2 ducklings
2 gadwall and 1 duckling
4 great crested grebe
30 coot
1 ruddy duck f
30 black headed gull and 1 juv
20lesser black backed
5 herring gull
1 redpoll
lots goldfinch with juvs

1 emperor dragonfly, 2 broad bodied chaser m+f, 1 black tailed skimmer f, 1 common darter.

Female broad bodied chaser ovipositing in flight

Female black tailed skimmer

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Cinnabar moth larvae on common ragwort

Prescot reservoirs,

Still pretty quiet on the birding front. Tufted duck have increased to 56 and the first 2 young tufted duck were noted. 4 gadwall ducklings with parents and now only 2 shellducklings left with parents. Coot numbers are rising with 20 birds now present. 1 female ruddy duck, 6 great crested grebes,10 barnacles, 50 canada. BH reported 1 ring plover this morning and several curlew and a common sand throghout the week. AS also reports a single crossbill over.
The first 2 gatekeepers of the year around no3 res. A silver y moth, red admiral, and large skipper in the meadow. 2 emperor dragonfly, 2 broad bodied chasers and 2 common blue damselflys on the new pond.