"For now we are young let us lay in the sun and count every beautiful thing we can see" Neutral Milk Hotel.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

A new leaf beetle for us....

Chrysolina staphylaea, on Sea Aster, Holme NWT, 29th Aug 2015

Fungus, flower and flutterby!

Ringstead Downs on 28th August.

Two very large fungi growing on the north-facing bank. Species?

The Autumn Gentian was in flower, but not open as it was not in the sun.

And there was still the odd Chalkhill Blue on the north-east slope.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Dusky Longhorn

Dusky Longhorn Arhopalus rusticus, Hunstanton (garden moth trap), 23rd August 2015

Some recent moths

Crescent, Holme NOA, 22nd August 2015

Bordered Straw, Holme NOA, 22nd August 2015

Pinion-streaked Snout, Holme NOA, 22nd August 2015

Gold Spot, Holme NWT, 22nd August 2015

Small Wainscot, Holme NOA, 22nd August 2015

Lesser Swallow Prominent, Holme NOA, 24th August 2015

Dune Stinkhorn

A freshly emerged Dune Stinkhorn Phallus hadriani, Holme NWT, 27th August 2015

Another - about 12 hours older

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Recent Birds

Sunday evening saw a mass arrival of Pied Flycatches that by nightfall reached a potential whopping 40 individuals!  With them was a single Spotted Flycatcher, Tree Pipit and two Redstarts.

The following morning as soon as sunlight warmed the bushes birds became very active feeding and bush hopping but by lunch most had moved off!  That evening another small arrival of birds hit our shores containing mostly Wheatears and Whinchats.

Highlights from yesterday included - 4 Pied Flycatchers, Icterine Warbler, 2 Redstarts, 3 Whinchats, 6+ Wheatears, 2 Tree Pipits, 4 Garden Warblers, 12 Willow Warblers, 15+ Chiffchaffs, 15 Lesser Whitethroats, 2- Blackcaps, 4 Yellow Wagtails, a flock of 23 Greenshank over(!!!) + several singles, Spotted Redshank, 3 Wood Sandpipers and Short-eared Owl.

Another recent notable sighting was of 20+ Black Terns roosting off the golf course by T. Girling and myself.


My first grounded Hummingbird Hawkmoth resting on The Firs yesterday morning...

Friday, 21 August 2015

Moth caterpillar

I found this caterpillar on my rambling rose today. I believe it to be a caterpillar of the Grey Dagger moth Acronicta psi.

A prickly visitor at Holme Dunes!

This hedgehog was wandering around the grass by the visitor centre at Holme Dunes on Thursday afternoon.

The Eared Leafhopper - Britain's largest !

Eared Leafhopper, Ledra aurita, Hunstanton, 21st August 2015.

I found this strange-looking beast on top of my moth trap last night.....I think it looks a bit like a miniature cross between a Duck-billed Platypus and a Stegosaurus. Or is that just me ?

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

An August miscellany

A bit of a mixture from the last few days.
First a plume moth which was on the inside of my kitchen window one morning. Keith has identified it as a Beautiful Plume.

Some of the 120+ Black-tailed Godwits feeding on Smithdon School field along with Common Gulls, Jackdaws and Oystercatchers. They seem to alternate between Smithdon and Redgate School fields.

One of about 6 small wasps which were on a wall in Park Road, Hunstanton. An ID would be good!

One of the 7 male Chalkhill Blue butterflies at Ringstead Downs this year. (Same number as last year).

One Autumn Gentian plant in bud at Ringstead Downs. There may be more but I didn't want to walk over the area too much.

An unlucky sawfly

Spiked Shieldbug, Picromerus bidens, Holme NOA, 15th August 2015 with Turnip Sawfly, Athalia rosae

Small Red-eyed Damselfly

This Small Red-eyed Damselfly was in the dunes to the east of the pines on 15th August. On the 16th, there were several others on Redwell Marsh.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Late Natterjacks practice their handwriting

Natterjack spawn, Holme NWT, 2nd August 2015

Six great August moths

Marbled Yellow Pearl, Evergestis extimalis, Holme NOA, 2nd August 2015

Ruddy Flat-body, Agonopterix subpropinquella, Hunstanton, 3rd Aug 2015 (caught by Keith & Joan Fox)

Gold-dot Slender, Euspilapteryx auroguttella, Hunstanton, 3rd Aug 2015 (caught by Keith & Joan Fox)

Scalloped Hook-tip, Hunstanton, 6th August 2015

Antler Moth, Holme NOA, 15th August 2015

Twin-spotted Footman, Holme NOA, 15th August 2015

Bee Wolfs and Ornate-tailed Digger Wasps

Male Bee Wolf, Philanthus triangulum, Holme NWT, August 16th 2015

Female Bee Wolf, Philanthus triangulum, at colony on slope above Saltings Car Park, Holme NWT, 16th August 2015

Ornate-tailed Digger Wasp, Cerceris rybyensis, Saltings Bee Wolf colony, 17th August 2015

Sunday, 2 August 2015

22 butterfly species on the wing on the patch today !

Robert, Karla and I can add Speckled Wood and Holly Blue (pines) as well as Dark-green Fritillary, Small Heath and both Essex and Small Skippers (all in the dunes) to Adrian's excellent records, bringing the total to 22 butterfly species on the wing today. Common and Ruddy Darters, Blue-tailed and Emerald Damselflies, Banded Demoiselle, Four-spotted Chaser, Black-tailed Skimmer, Emperor, Migrant and Southern Hawkers were all on the wing too.

Chalkhill Blues and other butterflies

On this warm, sunny afternoon at Ringstead Downs I saw 2 Chalkhill Blue males flying among the Small Scabious on the North-east slope.  I hope these are the first of a good number and could be a sign that they bred successfully last year!
The Chalkhill Blue was just one of 17 different species in flight at the downs today. The others were:
Small Tortoiseshell, Peacock, Comma, Red Admiral, Brimstone, Painted Lady, Large White, Small White, Green-veined White, Small Copper, Brown Argus, Common Blue, Ringlet, Meadow Brown, Gatekeeper, Small/Essex Skipper.