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Still fairly insecty

Posted by on July 23, 2012 10:40 PM | 

tort237.jpg

Few Small Tortoiseshell about nectaring today on the coast at Ainsdale - but this one didn't even have the decency to open its wings in the gusty, hot conditions.
More fresh looking Dark Green Frits out, with plenty of Meadow Browns, the odd Small Copper, Common Blue and Gatekeeper - but I haven't managed to find a Grayling yet.
Then again, I haven't had much opportunity for a good rummage.
One or two Redpoll and Siskin overhead in the last few days, and young Willow Warblers moving through in small numbers, although I fear the invasion of sherbet lemons that was the "Irish Sea Willow Warbler Movement" of yesteryear is much diminished now.
The higher water table appears to be benefitting the Dune Helleborines - I counted 78 in one area, and most of them are going over already.
On the downside, the colony of Broomrape in the dunes near Weld Road isn't much good so far - I could only see three of these sinister parasites compared to 50 in the same area at the same time last year.

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Didn't get a chance to check the tide today, but I could hear Sandwich Terns calling from over the dunes, amid the blizzard of buckets and spades, cars, ice creams, kites, dogs, horses etc that descend onto the sand when it heats up.
Eyes to the skies everyone, eyes to the skies...


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Ruddy Darter, Emerald Damselfly, Common Darter, Grayling, Common Blues, Dark Green Frits, Gatekeepers, Small Skippers, Meadow Browns, hordes of Six Spot Burnets, a few Oak Eggars and the white form of Early Marsh Orchid in the dunes at Ainsdale.
None too shabby - but some birds would have been good (okay, okay, the Sarnie Tern roost and Dunlin flocks are pretty fine).

Hi John, until today my most interesting obs this week were 49 screaming Swifts over the garden at dusk on Saturday and 51 House Sparrows preening in the morning sun in my back garden on Monday.
Things changed today at lunchtime however when I went for a walk on the sea wall from Meols towards Leasowe and a horserider heading towards me put up a bird from the track which at first appeared to be a Gt Spotted Pecker but turned out to be a Hoopoe!!
It headed inland pursued by a gang of Swallows..

Had a look around the fields between Scarisbrick/Kew/Birkdale/Shirdley Hill last night which I do from time to time.
Still plenty of Corn Bunting activity down Black Moss Lane, with possibly a family group flying about, though I never got decent views plus a couple of singing birds. Another bird singing by the Environment Agency Sluice gate on Boundary Brook, Birkdale Cop Road where I've not heard one for a number of years.
Also of interest a flock of 12 Mistle Thrush down Black Moss Lane, surely not one brood/family group?!
Also Barn Owl and Buzzard knocking about, the Barn Owl hunting along Boundary Brook.
I'm also fairly sure I heard Ringed Necked Parakeet(s) calling near Benthams Way, Kew yesterday but I didn't see them!!

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